THE UNIVERSITY OF
C. Carroll Mollis
OEPHEUS C. KERR PAPERS
. NEW YORK:
Carleton, Publisher, 413 Broadway,
(late ECDD k CAKLETON.)
M DCCC LXIU.
Entered according to Act of Congress, in (he vear 1S62.
Bt GEO. W . CARL ETON.
In the Clerks office of the District Court for the Southern District of New York.
NOTING THE LAMExVTABLE INCONVENIENCES OF A '' PRES3-CF.NSOE5Hir," AND
PARTI LLY REVEALING THE CIKCUIISTANCES ATTENDANT ON A MARVELLOUS
STRATEGIC CHANGE OF BASE BY THE MACKEREL BRIGAPE 9
ILLUSTRATING THE DISASTROUS EFFECTS OF STRATEGY UPON NATIONAL LITERA-
TURE, AS EXEMPLIFIfD IN THE ORIGINAL TALE R^AD BY OUR CORRtSPOND-
BNT BBFORK THE COSMOPOLITAN CLUB
SETTING FORTH A NKW VILLAINY OF THB BLACK RKPUBLICAN3, AND DBSCRIBINO
THK THRILLING CONSTITUTIONAL BATTLE OF DUCK LAKE
WHERFIN ARE PEF^KNTKD SOME FEMININK REFERENCES, AN ANECDOTE BY THE EX-
ECUTIVE, AND CERTAIN NOTES OF A VISIT TO THE FESTIVE SHFNANDOAU
BUGGBSTING MENTAL RELAXATION FOR A TIME, AND INTRODUCING A FAMILIAK
SKETCH OF THi WAH-STKICKEN D-AMA IN THE RURAL DISTRICTS
SHOWING HOW THE G' NEPAL OF THE MACKEREL B IGADE ISSUED AN AFFECTING
GENERAL ODER, EXEMPLIFYING THE BEAUTIES OF A SPADE-CAJIPAIGN AS
EXHIBITED IN STRATEGY HALL. AND CELEBRATING A NOTABLE CASE OF
ISSTAKCIKG THE BENEFICENT DEPORTMENT OF THE VENERABLK GAMMOX, AND
NOTING THK PERFORMANCE OF A KEMAPKABLE MORAL DBAMA BT CAPTAIN
VILLIAM BBO WN ... 97
REPORTING THE SECOND REGULAR MEETING OF THE COSMOPOLITAN' CLUB, AND
THE BRITISH MEMBER'S CITATION OF THE ENGLISH POETS
PORTRAYING A SOCIAL EFFECT OF THE POSTAGE-STAMP CURRENCY, DESCRIBING
THE G-EAT WAR MEETING IN ^CCOMAC, RECORDING THE LATEST EXPLOIT OF
THE MACKEREL BRIGADE, AND INTRODUCING A DRAFTING ITEM 118
CONTAINING FRESH TRIBUTES OF ADMIRATION TO THE DEVOTED WOMEN OF AMER-
ICA. AND DEVELOPING THE GREAT COLONIZATION SCHEME OF THE GENERAL
OF THE MACKEREL BRIGADE FOH THF BENEFIT OF THE BLACK RACE 128
GIVING A FAMILIAR ZOOLOGICAL ILLUSTRATION OF THE " SITUATION," AND CEL-
EBRATING THE BRILLIANT STRATEGICAL EVACUATION OF PARIS BT THE MACK-
6H0WING HOW THE COMOPOLITANS MET AGAIN, TO BE INTRODUCED TO THE
" NEUTRAL BRITISH GENTLEMAN," AND HEAR M. BONBON'S FRENCH STOKT .. . 143
NOTING THE REMARKABLE RET OGRADE ADVANCE OF THE MACKEREL BRIGADE
UPON WASHINGTON, AND THK UNSEEMLY RAID OF THE RECKLESS CONFEDER-
IN WHICH OUR CORRESPONDENT ASTONISHES U3 BY ENGAGING IN SINGLE COM-
BAT WITH M. MICHELET, AND DEMOLISHING " L'AMOUR" AND " LA FEMilE".. 174
GIVING ASSURANCE OF THK UNMITIGATED SAFETT OF THE CAPITAL, EXEMPLI-
FVING COLONEL WOBINSON'S DRAFTING EXPKrIENCE, AND NARRATING A
OvEAT METAPHTSICAL VICTORY 184
INTRODUCING ONCE MORE THE COSMOPOLITAN CLUB, WITH A CURIOUS "LA-
MENT," AND A STORY FROM THE SPANISH MEMBER 198
ILLUSTRATING THE IMPERTURBABLE CALMNESS OF THK NATIONAL CAPITAL, AND
NOTING THE MEMORABLE INVASION OF ACCOMAC 220
COMMEVCING WITH HISTORICAL REFE'^ENCE ; RELATING THE EPISODE OF SPURI-
OSO GHIMALDI, AND DETAILING THE LAMENTABLE FAILURE OF CAPTAIN
SAMYULE SA-MITH TO PERISH HE! OICALLT 228
SHOWING HOW THE PRESIDENT AND THE GENERAL OF THK MACKEREL BEIGADR
ISSUED O-^EAT EMANCIPATION PK0CLAMATI0N3, AND HOW THE CHAPLAIN
WROTE A RADICAL POEM
KEPO'TING THE LATEST SMALL STORY FROM " HONEST ABE," AND DESCRIBING
THE MOST MEt CENARY BAYONET CHARGE ON KECORD 250
MAKING MENTION OF AVOTHBR MEETING OF THE COSMOPOLITAN CLUB, AT WHICH
THB TURKISH AND RUSSIAN MEMBERS READ THEIR STO-IE3 260
VI 11 CONTKNTS.
CONCESNIKG THE SEKIOUS MIST.4KE OF THE VfXE'^ABLE GAMMON, THE CHAP-
LAINS POKTICAL DISCOVEKT, THE PROMOTION OF COMMODORE HEAD, AND
THE RECEPTION OF THE PRESIDBNT'S PROCLAMATION BT THE SOUTHFRN
C NFiDERACT 2^i
SETTING FORTH THE FALSE AND TRUE ASPECTS OF BEAMING OLD AGB RE3PEC-
TIVELTj AND SHOWING HOW THE UNBLUSHING CONFEDERACY BIADE ANOTHER
REFERRING TO THE MO-SQCITO AS A TEST OF HUMAN NATURE, EXPLAINING THE
LONG HALT OF THE MACKEREL BRIGADE, AND NOTING THE COURT OF IN-
QUIRY ON CAPTAIN VILLIAM BROWN
SHOWING WHAT EFFECT DEMOCRATIC TRIUMPHS HAVE UPON THE PBESIDEST,
NOTING OUR CORRESPONDENT'S STRANGE MISTAKE ABOUT A BRITISH FLAG,
AND INDICATING THE STRATt(OIC ADVANCE OP THE MACKEREL BEI0 4DE 328
IN WHICH THE STORY TOLD BY THE GERMAN MEMBER OF THE COSMOPOLITAN CLUB
IS DILY REPORTED 337
SHOWING HOW THE NATIONAL INSANITARY COMMITTEE MADE A STRANGE BLUN-
DER ; HOW THB BELOVtD GENERAL OF THE MACKEREL BRIGADE WAS RE-
MOVED AND EXALTED ; AND ENDING WITH AX INFALLIBLE RECIPE 353
ORPHEUS C. KERE PAPERS.
NOTING THE LAMENTABLE INCONVENIENCES OF A " PRESS-CEN-
SORSHIP," AND PARTIALLY REVEALING THE CIRCUMSTANCES
ATTENDANT ON A MARVELLOUS STRATEGIC CHANGE OF BASE BY
THE MACKEREL BRIGADE.
Washington, D. C, July 6, 1862.
"When in the course of Iiiin^an events, my boy, it
becomes necessary for a chap of respectable parentage
to write a full and graphic account of a great battle,
without exasperating the press-censor by naming the
locality of the conflict, nor giving the number of tlie
troops engaged, the officers commanding, the move-
ments of the different regiments, the nature of the
ground, the time of day, or the result of the struggle ;
when it becomes necessary for a chap of respectable
parentage to do this, my boy, that chap reminds me
of a poor chap I once knew in the Sixth Ward.
The poor chap took daguerreotype-likenesses in
10 OEPHEUS C. KEEK PAPERS.
high style for low prices, and one day, there came to
his third-story Lonvre a good-looking young man,
dressed in a higli botanical vest-pattern and six large-
sized breastpins, and says he to the picture chap, con-
"There's a young woman living in Henry-street,
which I love, and who admires to see my manly
shape ; but her paternal father refuses to receive me
into the family on account of mj low celery. Now,"
says the breastpin-chap, knowingly, " I will give you
just twenty-five dollars if you'll go to that house and
take the portrait of that young lady for me, pretend-
ing that yoa have heard of her unearthly charms, and
want her picture, to add to the collection shortly to be
sent to the Prince of Wales."
Having witnessed the worst passions of his landlord
tliat morning, my boy, and received a telegraphic
dispatch of immediate importance from his tailor, the
artist chap heard about the twenty-five dolUir job
with a species of deep rapture, and undertook to do
the job. He went to the Henry -street palatial man-
sion with his snuillcst camera under his arm, and when
he got into the parlor he sent fur the young lady.
But she didn't see it in thiit light, my boy, and she
wouldn't come down. For a moment the poor chap
was in a fix ; but he was there to take her portrait, or
perish in the attempt, and as he saw an oil-painting
of the young girl over the mantelpiece, he took that,
and skedaddled. The next day the breastpin-chap
called at his Louvre again, and says to him :
" Have you taken Sary's portrait ?"
" Yes," says the artist chap, " I took it."
SECOND SERIES. ll
" Where is it ?" says the breastpin-chap with emo-
'• Tliere it is," says the artist-chap, pointing to the oil-
painting, with a pleasing expression of conntenance.
As high art is not appreciated in this country, my
boy, a policeman called at the Louvre that afternoon
and removed tlie artist-chap to a place which is so
musical that all the windows have bars, and each man
carries a stave.
As my taste for music is not uncontrollable at present,
my boy, and I can't write a fall account of a battle,
witl»out referring in some degree to the struggle,
which we are forbidden to mention,! shall not be par-
ticular as to details.
I am permitted to say that I went down to Paris
with ni}^ gotliic steed Pegasus on Monday last, and
found the Mackerel Brigade coming back across Duck
Lake with the frantic intention of changing its base of
operations. The Conic Section, my boy, had been or-
dered to advance and force tlie Southern Confederacy
to compel it to retreat, and the rapidity with which
this was accomplislied was a brilliant vindication of
the consummate strategy of the general of the Mack-
erel Brigade. I found the general a few miles back
of the scene of action issuing orders — for the same,
with a little more sugar, and says I :
" Well, my indefatigable Napoleon, have you
changed your base successfully ?"
The general smiled like a complacent porpoise, and
says he :
" We've reached our second base, my friend, being
compelled to do so by the treble force of the enemy."
12 OKPHEUS C. KEKR PAPERS.
I went on to the second base, wliicli I reached just
in time to see Captain Yilliam Brown, on his geometri-
cal steed Euclid, arresting the flight of Compan}^ 3.
Eegiment 5, under Captain Samyule Sa-niith.
"Samjnile ! Samyule !'' says Yilliam, feeling behind
him to make sure that his canteen was all right, " is
this the way you treat the United States of America at
such a critical period in her distracted history ?"
" I scorn your insinivation," says Samyule, " and
repel your observation. I am executing a rapid flank
movement according to Hardee."
" Ah !" says Yilliam, "excuse my flighty remarks.
I do not mean to say that you can be frightened," says
Yilliam, soothingly ; " but it's my opinion that your
mother was very much annoyed by a large-sized fiy
just before you were added to the census of the Uni-
ted States of America."
Yilliam's idea of the connection between cause and
efi'ect, my boy, is as clear as a brandy-punch when
the sugar settles.
The battle now raged in a manner which I am not
permitted to describe, with results I am not allowed
to communicate. Yilliam appeared wherever the fray
was tbe thickest, waving his celebrated sword Escali-
bar (Anglo-Saxon of crowbar), and encouraging all
the faint-hearted ones to get between himself and the
blazing Confederacy. Borne a considerable distance
backward by the force of circumstances, he had
reached a comparatively clear spot in the rear, when
he suddenly found himself confronted by Captain
Munchausen, of the Southern Confederacy.
Captain Munchausen was mounted upon the thin-
SECOND SERIES. 13
nest excuse for four legs that I ever saw, my boy ;
and what tempted nature to form such an excuse
when the same amount of bone-work would have
brought more money, it was not for mortal man to
" Ha !" says Yilliam, hastily reining-up Euclid, and
touching his sword Escalibar, ominously, " we meet
once more to discuss the great national question of
"Sir," says Captain Munchausen, superciliously
waving his keen edged poker and drawing his liery
steed up from his knees, "it is my private intention
to produce some slaughter in a private family of the
name of Brown."
Fire flashed from Yilliam's eyes, he replaced a
small flask in his bosom, and says he :
" Come on, and let the fight come oflf."
Then, my boy, commenced a series of equestrian
manoeuvres calculated to exemplify all the latest im-
provements in cavalry tactics and patent circusses. —
Round and round each other rode the fierce foemen,
bobbing convulsively in theh* saddles like exasperated
jumping-jacks, and cutting the atmosphere into minute
slices with their deadly blades. Now did the deter-
mined Yilliam amble sideways toward the rebel,
thrusting fiercely at him w^hen only a few yards inter-
vened between them ; and anon did the foaming Mun-
chausen wriggle fiercely backward against the
haunches of the steed Euclid, slashing right and left
with tumultuous perspiration.
It was when this thrilling combat was at the hottest
that the steed Euclid, being exasperated by a large
14: OEPHEDS C. KERB PAPERS.
blue-bottle fly, arose airily to bis hind legs, and carried
the Union champion right on top of liis enemy. Down
came tlie glittering Escalibar on the shoddy helmet of
the astonislied Munchausen ; but the deadly blade
was not sharp enougli for its purpo.se, and only caused
the foeman to make hasty piofane remarks.
"Ah!" says Villiam, bitterly, eyeing his sword as
Euclid waltzed backward, " I forgot to sliarpen my
brand after cutting that last plate of smoke-beef."
''Surrender!" shouted the nnmanl}^ Muncliausen,
noticing that Villiam was sheathing his blade, and
bearing gracefully down upon him in an elaborate
"jSTever!" says Yilliam, drawing his revolver, and
firing madly into the setting sun.
Swiftly as the lightning flashes did the Confederate
champion follow suit with his pistol, sending a bullet
horribly whizzing into the nearest tree.
"Die!" shouted Yilliam, prancing excitedly in all
directions, and delivering another shot. Then he
gazed upon his revolver with an expression of inex-
pressible woe. The weapon had deceived him !
"Perish !" roared Munchausen, discharging another
barrel as he went lioj»ping about. x\fter which, he
ground his teeth, and gazed upon his pistol with
speechless fury. The weapon had played him false !
I was gazing with breathless interest on this des-
perate encounter, my boy, expecting to see more
slaughter, when Captain Muncliausen suddenly
turned his spirited stallion, and fled frantically
from the scene ; for he had heard the shouts of the ap-
SECOND SEEIE8. 15
proacliing Mackerels, and did not care to be taken
" Ha !" sajs Yilliam, gazing severely at Company 3,
llegiment 5, as it came pouring forward, "has the
Southern Confederacy concluded to submit to the
United States of America?"
What the answer was, my boy, I am not allowed to
say ; but you may rest satisfied that a thing has been
done which I am not permitted to divulge ; and should
this lead, as 1 hope it will, to a movement I am not
suffered to make public, it cannot fail to result in a
consummation which I am forbidden to make known.
But if, on the other hand, the strategic movement
which I am not at liberty to describe should be fol-
lowed by a stroke I am restrained from explaining,
you will find that the efifect it would not be judicious
in me to set forth, will produce a consequence which
the War Department denies me the privilege of devel-
I was speaking to a Kew England Congress chap,
this morning, concerning the recent events which I
am compelled to remain silent about, and, says he :
" The proper way to save the Union is to bewilder the
rebels by issuing calls for fresh troops at breakfast-
time, and countermanding the calls as soon as the cof-
fee comes in. Strategy," says the grave legislative
chap, thoughtfully, ''is not confined to the tented
field ; it may be used with good effect by Cabinet
ministers ; and our recent proposal to reduce the
army 150,000 men was a piece of consummate legisla-
Legislative strategy is a very good thing to bewil-
16 ORPHEUS C. KERR PAPERS.
der the rebels, my boy ; and if it also bewilders every-
body else, the moral effect of the adjournment of Con-
gress will prove rather beneficial than otherwise to
our distracted country.
Yours, under suppression,
Orpheus C. Kerr.
ILLUSTRATING THE DISASTROUS EFFECTS OF STRATEGY UPON NA-
TIONAL LITERATURE, AS EXEMPLIFIED IN THE ORIGINAL TALE
READ BY OUR CORRESPONDENT BEFORE THE COSMOPOLITAN
Washington, D. C, July 9th, 1862.
A FEW weeks ago, my boy, when national strategy
seemed rapidly coming to a distinct understanding
with the American Eagle, and the fall of Richmond
had resolved itself into a mere question of time — as
slightly distinguished from Eternity, — I became a
member of the Cosmopolitan Club.
This club, my boy, is a select draft from the host of
clumpy but respectable foreigners now assembled here
to criticize the military performances of our distracted
country, and I have the honor to represent my native
land, solus, in it. Its members are, a civilized Eus-
sian chap named Yitchisvitch, a Turk named K E.
Ottoman, an Englishman named Smith-Brown, a
Frenchman named Bonbon, a German named Tuyfel-
dock, a Spaniard and myself.
The object of this small international organization,
which meets once every three weeks, is to advance
the cause of free and easy literature in the lulls of
national strife, and preserve coherent ideality and
tolerable grammar from falling into disuse. The
18 ORPHEUS C. KERR PAPERS.
foreign chaps, my boy, all speak much better English
than a majority of our brigadiers ; and in order to
give a system to our proceedings, it has been resolved,
that each of us, in turn, shall relate an old-fashioned
story relating to his own particular country ; and that
all shall take pains to contribute miscellaneous items
for the general delectation of the club.
The privilege of producing the first story was voted
to me, my boy, and at the meeting of the Cosmopoli-
tan last evening, I produced from my pocket a manu-
script already secured from me by a wealthy journal*
for a fabulous sum, and proceeded to regale assem-
bled Europe with
A QUARTER OF TWELVE.
CHAPTER I. — F. F. VICISSITUDES.
The forces of the Southern Confederacy — so called
because a majority of them were forced into the ser-
vice — had just won another glorious victory over their
disinclination to retreat, and were rapidly following it
up, propelled by the National Army. The richest
and best blood of the South was profusely running for
the cause to which it was devoted, accompanied by
those notable possessors in w^iose cases it poured in
Seated at his breakfast-table in the city of Rich-
mond, with his wife for a vis-a-vis at a board that
might well have groaned for more things than one,
and his daughter at his right hand, was Mr. Ordeth,
• Vamtt Faik.— Ed.
SECOND SERIES. 19
a scion of one of those Virginia Families very proper-
ly designated as "First " for the reason that no other
Families on earth have ever felt inclined to second
them in anything. ^
Mr. Ordeth was a personage of fiery and chivalrous
visage, from the lower circumference of which de-
pended iron-grey whiskers, so similar in shape to the
caudal appendage of a mule, that one might suppose
nature to have intended the construction of an asinus
domesticus when first slie commenced to mould the
mortal material, but, having inadvertently planted the
tail at the wrong end, was satisfied to finish him off as
a man. His hair was too much of a brush in its own
character to agree well with an artificial brush in the
objective case ; he wore a rohe de chamhre richly illus-
trated with impossible flowers growing on improbable
soil — let us say on holey ground ; his nether continua-
tions were spotted here and there with diminutive
banners of broadcloth secession, and it w\as noticeable
as he stretched his feet under the table that his slip-
pers had once done duty as crochet watch-cases.
The table spread for the morning meal was pecul-
iarly Yirginiatic, being very rich in plate and poor in
provender ; for hoe-cake and fried Carolina potatoes
were the only eatables visible, whilst the usual places
of cofi'ee-pot, bread-plate and salt-cellar were supplied
with cards inscribed : '^ Coffee $20 per lb., in conse-
quence of Blockade."—" Flour $2i per bbl."— " Salt
$25 per lb." If any member of the Family felt in-
clined to wish for any of these last articles, he, or she,
had but to glance at the card substitutes to lose instan-
20 ORPHEUS C. KEKR PAPERS.
taneously all appetite for said articles. There was
philosophy in this idea, mon ami.
" LebbYj" said Mr. Ordeth, addressing his daughter,
whose auburn curls and pretty face were none the less
attractive because they crowned what seemed to be a
troubled fountain of extremely loud calico with a dash
of moonlight on top — " Libdy," said he, "pass me the
The morning journal, which had recently augmented
its value as a family and commercial sheet by coming
out on superior wrapping paper, was passed to her
father by Libby, she having first satisfied herself, with
a sigh of disappointment, that the list of deaths did
not contain the name of a single one of her friends.
Woman, mon ami, does not regard death as you
and I do. To her it is a sleep in which the slumberer
himself becomes a dream for the rest of the world;
and its announcement is to her the mere evening breeze
that softly lifts another leaf in the sacred Yolume of
Memory, and lets the starlight, fciUing through a
shower of tears, rest on a name henceforth to live im-
mortal in the heart. I was told this by a young lady
who wears spectacles and writes for the Boston press.
As Mr. Ordeth perused the latest news from the
seat of war, his bosom heaved to such an extent that
one or two of the pins confining the front of his dress-
ing-gown to his throat gave out. " Honoria," said
he, addressing his quiet little wife, who was spasmo-
dically eating and repairing a rent in her dress simul-
taneously, — " we have again defeated the hordes of
Lincoln, and I think, my dear, that we had better get
ready to leave Kichmond. TIiq ^'nquirer bsljs : 'Yes-
SECOND SERIES. 21
lerday a balf a hundred of our troops were attacked
near Fredericksburg by nearly forty thousand Yan-
kees, whom they compelled to retreat after them
toward this city. We took four hundred prisoners
who will be demanded of the enemy immediately,
and all of our men, save the messenger bringing the
news, are now briskly pushing forward in the direc-
tion of Fort Lafayette.' Yon see, my dear, we always
whip them inland. The Yankees gain all their vic-
tories on water."
Which is very true ; for it is as much a fact that
the national troops win their tnumphs on water, as it
is that the rebels do their best on whiskey.
Mrs. Oedeth made no verbal reply to her husband's
exultations, but assumed that simpering expression of
countenance by which ladies are accustomed to denote
their amiable willingness to swallow without question
whatever the speaker may say.
" Providence is evidently favorable to the South,"
continued the head of the Family, impressively, " and
has thus far treated us in a gentlemanly manner ; but
should it haj^pen, Honokia, that the Hessian vandals
of Lincoln should reach this city, I myself will be the
first to fire all I hold dear, rather than let it fall into
the hands of the invader. Yes !" exclaimed Mr.
(.)edeth with enthusiasm, rising from his chair and
moving excitedly toward the door of the apartment,
— " with my own hands would I apply the torch to
you and to my child."
*' O YicTOE," said Mrs. Ordeth, with tears springing
to her eyes, ^'I reckon you would."
" Aside from the wrongs of the South," continued
22 OKPHEUS C. KERR PAPERS.
the inspired Ordeth, pusliing his bowie-knife a little
further round behind his back, that it might not hurt
his hip, — "we have Familj losses to avenge. On-
ly yesterday, my nncle was struck at Yorktown
with a shell that completely tore his head from his
" How perfectly absurd !" ejaculated the hitherto
"Why it's actually ridiculous," said Mrs. Ordeth.
And so it was. The sex have a keen perception of
"IIow I wish that our vitjilants had cauorht that
low-minded Abolition whelp, Peters," continued the
Virginian, grinding his teeth ; " but he disappeared
so suddenly that da}^ that I was entirely bewildered.
To think that the hound — my cousin's son as he is —
should dare to demand payment of a bill from a
Southern gentleman ! He will hnd congenial souls
among Lincoln's hordes, I reckon."
The speaker evidently recognized the fact that a man
with a bill to collect would derive very little benefit
from Southern hoards, at any rate.
A close observer might have noticed that Miss
Ltbby's cheeks betrayed the faintest tint of virgin wine
at this last speech of her father's ; but as it is not my
business to inquire the wine wherefore of everything,
I shall say no more about that at present.
"While speaking, the paternal Ordeth had placed his
hand unconsciously as it were on the knob of the
door ; and now, with a sudden movement, he opened
the door. Or rather, lie simplv turned the knob ; for
the door fairly forced itself open against him, and
SECOND SERIES. 23
there unexpectedly tumbled half way into the room a
somewhat venerable person from Afric's sunny foun-
tains. From the manner in which this colored person
fell across the sill, it was evident that he had been
upon his knees the instant before.
The ladies uttered little shrieks and tlien went on
with their hoe-cake ; but Mr. Okdeth viewed the intru-
der with a glance of suspicion.
" Jocko, you black reskel !" said he, in a suppressed
manner, " what are you doing here?"
The oppressed African, who, like most slaves was
pious,^ose to his feet with touching humility, and said
" Ise watchin', Mars'r, for de Angel of de Lor'."
" Oh," returned the haughty Yirginian, scorning to
show how deeply he was affected, " you're watchin'
for that, are you?"
" Yes, Mars'r," said the attached slave ; " and I hab
pray dat my good Mars'r may gib up drinkin' and
be one of the good angels too. Oh, Mars'r Okdeth, I
hab wrastle much for 3^ou in praj^er."
I know not how that slaveholder's heart was affected
by this beautiful instance of his humble bondman's
devotion ; but I do know, mon am.i^ that he reached
forth his right hand, seized the chattel by the collar,
and was heard to carry on a blasphemous conversa-
tion with him for the space of fifteen minutes there-
after, in the hall.
24 ORPHEUS C. KEEK PAPERS.
CHAPTER II. " ROBERT, ROBERT TOI QUE j'aIME/'
In a room directly over the one last mentioned — a
room whose only furniture was a rude bedstead, a
looking-glass with a writing-table under it and a gas-
bracket extending halfway across it, and a lounge ex-
temporized from three tea-boxes and a quilt — stood
Mr. Bob Peters, aged twenty-three, a bachelor and a
fellow man. The time was just twenty-four hours
after the scene depicted in my first chapter, and as the
rays of the sunny Southern sun poured through a win-
dow upon the figure of Mr. Bob Peters, they revealed
an individual who was evidently unable, just then, to
make a raise himself.
Robert was a tall, smooth-faced, good-natured-look-
ing youth, wearing a coat that buttoned up to his very
cbin and was painfully shiney at its various angles,
corners, and button-holes ; a pair of inexpressibles very
roomy and equally glossy about the knees ; a brace of
carpet slippers, and (although indoors) a hat in a
" Marie Stuart" condition. That is to say, the style
of hat worn thus inappropriately by Mr. Bob Peters,
corresponded to a fashion in vogue with the ladies not
long ago, when the latter imagined that a bonnet very
much mashed down in front caused each and all of
them to present a touching and life-like resemblance
to the unfortunate Queen of Scots. In fact, this bon-
net did really give them just about such a frightened
look as they might be supposed to wear should some
SECOND SERIES. 25
modern Elizabetu Tudor order tlieiii all to instant ex-
Addiiio- to the consideration of Mr. Bob Peters'
severely straitened costume the fact that he was smo-
king an incredibly cheap segar, it is reasonable to in-
fer that he was ratlier liard-up when awake and net
much troubled with soft down when asleep.
Viewing Mr. Bob Peters financially and judging
him by a golden rule, one could see about him con-
siderable that was due unto others, as each of the
others was likely to be dun unto him.
"Bless my soul!'' soliloquized Mr. Bob Peters,
hastily turning from a long and profound contempla-
tion of himself in the mirror and commencing to pace
noiselessly up and down the room, — " here's misery !
Shut up in the garret of one of the First Families, with
a chap thirsting for my blood at the head of the do-
mestic circle down stairs, and the whole Confederacy
ready to bolt me without salt— which is verydear here
just now. Here's a situation for an unmarried man !"
exclaimed Mr. Bob Peters, insanely tearing his " Ma-
rie Stuart " from his head and bitterly crunching it in
his hand — " confined here as a prisoner by the young
woman of my afi"ectious to save my life from her own
father's sanguinary designs. Upon my soul !" groaned
Mr. Bob Peters, drearily slapping his left leg, " it's
enough to make me take to drinking, and I—"
" Dear Bob !"
Were you ever awakened from a horrid nightmare
dream of capital punishment and sudden death, mon
ami,, by the soft, persuasive voice of woman calling you
to a breakfast of etherial rolls and new-born eggs \ If
26 OEPHEUS C. KEER PAPERS.
SO, you can understand the feelings of Mr. Peters
when these fond words roused him from his terrible
He spun blithel}^ round on his dexter heel, absorbed
tlie faithful Libby to his manly breast, and inconti-
nently kissed for his lips a coating of lustrous bando-
line from the head of the fashionable maiden.
" Oh bliss !'' ejaculated Mr. Bob Peters, standing
on one foot by way of intensifying the sensation, "my
angel visits me in my dungeon, as angels A^isited other
good men in the Scriptures."
" Oh Bob, how you do smell of smoke," said the de-
" And thanks to your tlionghtfulness fortlie regalias
which have so lightened my lonely liours, since the
day when you brouglit me up to tliis room and then
told a virtuous and unsuspecting police that I liadfled
in the direction of the aurora horealis. By tlie way
Libby," said Mr. Bob Peters, thonglitfully, " my se-
gar-lighters are all out, and if you could make me a
few more out of the rest of those Confederate Treasury
"I will, I will," responded Miss Ordeth, lifting first
one white shoulder and then the other, as though she
would thereby work down her waist more firmly into
the belt formed by Mr. Bob Peters' right arm ; " but
now, dear Bob, we must think of how you are to be got
safely away from this house and out of the city. If
my pa should find out that you have been here all tliis
time, when he ^bought you were running for dear life,
he would — I really believe" — said Miss Libby Ordeth,
SECOND SERIES. 27
with increasing eyes, " that he would actually apply
the torch to me without waiting for the Yankees !"
Mr. Bob Peteks shuddered and turned pale, barely
saving himself from fainting by clasping his compan-
ion more tightly and leaning heavily against her lips.
The infatuated girl did not see the face peering in
through the half open door behind her, as she con-
tinued : —
" Quarter-past twelve is the hour^ Bob, though I
can't say on what night it shall be, yet. You must be
already to start on any night, and in the meantime
our meetings are, if possible, to be continued."
" Y^ou say that quarter-past twelve is the hour ?"
observed Mr. Petees, reflectively, patting the head
against his shoulder in a somewhat paternal manner.
" Yes, dear Bob ; and I wish I could be sure of pa's
going to bed earlier than that ; for 1 know it will be
hard for you to go out into the street at that time of
night. You are not accustomed to such late hours at
And, indeed, he was not ; for Mr. Bob Peter's
'• hours" at home were apt to be considerably later,
especially when he went into morning for some dear
" Sweet innocence !" exclaimed the young man,
much afiected by this evidence of thoughtfulness in
liis behalf, ''your kindness almost makes me forget
the treatment I have experienced at the hands of your
'' I think you can get off next Sunday night," con-
tinued Lebby, " if brother is sergeant of the guard ; for
he promised ta see that you got across the bridge and
28 OEPHEUS C. KEKK PAPERS.
past the patrol. Jocko will open the street door for
you when you start : and I want you to send me word,
if you can, after you get to IS'ew-York, what kind of
bonnets they're going to wear this summer."
"Dear girl !" murmured Bob, fondly, "I'll find out
the style and mention it to one of our Generals, who
will let you know by note, as soon as he arrives
" Dear Bob ! — ^but I must go now. Is there any-
thing I can send you to make you more comfortable ?"
As they stood there facing each other, Mr. Bob
Peters closed his right eye for an instant, and sufi'ered
the muscles of his mouth to relax, thereby expressing
some w^ant too deep for words.
"You shall have it," said the young girl, turning to
leave the room. At the door she was met by Jocko,
who entered as she passed out, for the ostensible pur-
pose of removing the remains of the captive's recent
The sound of the maiden's light footsteps soon died
away in the passage, like the vibrations of a high-
strung instrument in a passage of music, and the two
men stood alone together.
There they were — the White and the Black ; the one
a freeman in all save being deprived of his liberty ;
the other a slave in all save being unrestricted of his
freedom. Who could tell what Avas working in the
mind of each? Who should draw the line between
those men, when all was dark for the white and a luck-
less wight was the black? Who should say that the
w^hite man was anything better than the black man,
that the latter should bear the bonds of slavery —
SECOND SEKIES. 29
bonds as bard to bear even as Confederate bonds ?
Look at inanimate nature. Is it not tbe White of an
egg that bears the yolk ? Then why should the white
man turn the yoke altogether over to the black man ?
But I must refuse to follow out this great metaphysi-
cal question any further. The weather is too warm. I
will leave it to the Awful and Unfathomable German
Mind, which delights to toy heavily with the ele-
phants of Thought.
" Mars'r," said Jocko, handing a folded paper to the
fugitive prisoner, " dis was gub to me for you by my
chile Efkum, dat b'longs to Missus Adams ; and I hope,
Mas'r, dat you will read nm with fear an' trem'lin,' for
the Lor' is very good to let you lib in your great sins,
How beautiful, mon ami, is that strong spirit of
piety we often find developed in the uncultivated,
like the rich oyster found on the barren sea-shore.
Taken in connection with the childrem of Ham, it is
as mustard to a sandwich, for moving us to occasional
Mr. Bob Peters waved the faithful black from his
presence, and read the note, which ran thus :
" Mr. Peters, — Sir : — ^Though, as a daughter of the
Sonny South, I cannot but regard you as a traitor to
our country, the memory of past hours in my soul-life
induces me to act toward you as a heart-friend. I
have heard, through those faithful beings of which
your friends would rob and murder us, that you are a
prisoner, and will save you. Contrive to get out of
the house in some way on Sunday (to-morrow) even-
30 ORHPEUS C. KEER PAPERS.
ing, at a quarter of twelve^ and you will find those wait-
ing for you who will deliver you for a time from our
vengeance. It is the impulsive heart-throb of a weak
woman that bids me do this — not the spirit-aspiration
of the Southern daughter.
Mr. Bob Peters lowered the hand holding the note
until it rested heavily on his right knee, and gazed
before him, as he sat on his couch, with a puzzled ex-
pression of countenance. He had been sitting in this
way, perfectly motionless, for five minutes perhaps,
when the door was gently pushed open a few inches,
a dainty white hand came through the aperture, de-
posited a mysterious black bottle on the floor very
softly, and disappeared as it came. In an instant,
Mr. Peters sprang to his feet, dashed the note to the
ground, seized the bottle, and immediately applied it
to his lips with great enthusiasm.
His Mistress had understood that last subtle glance
he gave her. With the wonderful insight of man's
deeper nature peculiar to girls about eighteen years
old, she had divined the one thing required to make
the captive comfortable.
Oh, woman, woman ! In the language of a revised
"Without the smile from partial beauty won,
Ah, what were man ! — a world without a son I"
SECOND SERIES. 31
CHAPTER ni. — THE WTDOw's MITE.
The Adamses resided in one of the aristocratic by
ways crossing Main Street, and were directly de-
scended from those distinguished and chivalric an-
cieiis 'paiivres of the Old Dominion, who boasted the
blood of the English cavaliers, and were a terror to
their foes and creditors. Adams, the husband and
father, was a fine specimen of the Southern gentleman
in his day, possessing an estate in Louisa County, so
completely covered with mortgages that no heir could
get to it, and having won great fame by inventing an
entirely new and singularly humorous oath for the
benefit of a Yankee governess, when that despised
hireling presumed to ask for a portion of her last
year's salary. He might have lived to a green old
age, but for the extraordinary joy he experienced at
having negotiated a second mortgage on some prop-
erty not worth quite half the first, which filled this
worthy man with such exceeding great joy, that he
drank rather more at a sittitig than would start an or-
dinary hotel-bar, and died soon after of delirium ire-
mens^ as such noble and chivalric souls are very apt
to do. The family left by the lamented Adams, con-
sisting of a wife and one child — a daughter, at once
assumed tlie most becoming style of mourning, moved
in a funeral procession throngh society for six months,
and then resigned themselves to the will of Provi-
dence with that beautiful cheerfulness which may
either denote a high order of Cliristianity, or a low
order of memory, as the case may be.
32 ORPHEUS C. KERR PAPERS.
At the period of wliich the present veracious his-
tory treats, the bereaved mother and daughter were
living in subdued style in the locality designated
above. Among their most intimate associates were
the Ordeths, between whose family and theirs there
existed that pleasing and kindly familiarity which
permits the most open recognition of mutual virtues
in society and the most searching criticism of individ-
ual weaknesses at home. The Adamses and Ordeths
met at each other's houses with gushes of endearment
that edified all beholders ; and if Miss Eve said to her
mother on their way home from church that Lebby
Obdeth looked like a perfect fright in that ridiculous
new bonnet of hers, it was only because her affection-
ate heart felt a pang at seeing her bosom-friend ap-
pear to less advantage than her own self-sacrificing
It is a touching peculiarity of this modern friend-
ship, 'mon ami^ that a majority of the errors its fairest
votaries detect in each other, are those of the head — •
not of the heart. Eve Adams, whose diminutive size
had given occasion to the mot by which she was de-
nominated the '' Widow's "Mite," was calling at the
Ordeths when Mr. Bob Peters first came in under a
flag of truce from Fortress Monroe, and was witness
to the chivalric reception accorded to that gentleman
by his relatives, before his pecuniary mission was
known. In the exuberance of his nature, Mr. Peters
had kissed her Mith the rest of the family, and from
the moment of receiving that chaste salutation, Eve
had selected the Northern stranger as her hero in that
ideal novel of spiritual yellow-covers in which all
SECOND SERIES. 33
maidens live, and move and have their beings until
stern reality bursts upon them in the shape of a hus-
band or a snub.
From thenceforth she was a frequent visitor at the
Ordeths, and laid close siege to the gay Kobekt's
heart with all the languishment deemed necessary in
such cases, and a tremendous flirtation was going on
before the maiden discovered that the affections of the
youth were already given to another. Then came a
revulsion of feeling, opening the eyes of tlie Widow's
Mite to the fact that Mr. Bob Peters was a thieving
abolitionist, unworthy the toleration of any true daugh-
ter of the South. After this overpowing revelation,
it was the first thouglit of Eve Adams to at once in-
form the festive Peters of the utter detestation in
which she held him, and a favorable opportunity soon
offered. At a social gathering at the Ordeth's, she
had withdrawn for a moment to an ante-room, for the
purpose of drawing from her bosom an elegant silver
snuff-box, dipping therein a small brush, and subse-
quently applying the same to her pearly teeth, wdien
Mr. Bob Peters entered unannounced, and agreeably
demanded a " pinch." The situation was favorable to
an avowal of enmity, and a suitable expression was
rising to the lips of the maiden, wdien the thought of a
still keener revenge kept her silent, and she contented
herself with a temporary sneer and a majestic exit
from the apartment.
It was soon after this incident that Mr. Bob Peter's
presentation to Mr. Ordeth of the bill for furniture
which he had been empowered to collect by a New
York house, reminded the latter that it was his duty,
34: ORPHEUS C. KERB PAPERS.
as a patriot, to sacrifice even his cousin's son for the
good of the Confederacy. With the stern self-devo-
tion of an ancient Roman, Mr. Ordeth not only accused
his hapless relative of flagrant Abolitionism, but at
once made arrangements with the military authoiities
for that relative's immediate incarceration as an
enemy to the Commonwealth. An enemy to the
Commonwealth of Virginia must be indeed an unnat-
ural wretch ; for no such W' ealtb is known to be in
existence just now, and. enmity to the dead is a thing
inexcusable. It was a crime of which Mr. Bob Peters
was incapable ; yet would he have suffered for it, had
not the devoted Libby concealed him in the hour of
Of this concealment. Miss Eve had learned from
Efrum, the son of Jocko, though she knew not how
long it was to be continued.
Several of the Richmond churches were opened
that Sunday niglit, and thither repaired many of the
Cottonocracy, devotional children of Bale, to implore
Providence in behalf of an army w^hose heroes have
generally appeared, in tlie eyes of the Federal troops,
to be w^liolly Leave-ites. The recent intelligence of
*' another confederate victory," at Williamsburg, had
added a finishing touch to the panic created by re-
ports of the triumphal retreat from Yorktown previous-
ly received, and the fervor of Richmond's piety on
SECOND SERIES. 35
that evening was eminently worthy of a city liable at
any moment to be cannonized. The reverend clergy
of the rebel capital selected their texts from Exodus
by instinct, as it were, and proved so conclusively that
the Yankee invader was no man, that the listening
congregations were impressed with an instructive and
repentant sense of their own wickedness, (for they are
the wicked who invariably flee when " no man" pur-
sueth,) and several members evinced their new-born
disgust at this sinful world by resolutely closing their
eyes upon it at once.
In his pew sat Mr. Yictor E. Ordeth, with his wife
and son, the latter a member of the Eichmond Home
Guard. Stifl:' and erect he sat, like a solemn note of
admiration in a printer's case, ready to be used at the
end of any sounding passages, suffering an expression
of weighty approval to cross his countenance when
the preacher hoped the same planets might not there-
after be destined to shine on the North and the South.
And well he might ; for there had been something
in the late capture of JSTew Orleans and other ports by
the Union fleets to impress the Southern mind with no
small dread of the North's tar.
LiBBY remained at home under plea of sick-head-
ache ; but no sooner were her parents fairly out of
the house, than said plea proved to be entirely invalid.
At least, the young lady darted to her own private
room in a very sprightly manner, brought out from
thence a small package, and finally repaired to the
apartment wherein Mr. Bob Peters kept solitary vigils
and a bright lookout. Before passing in, however,
she paused to have a few words with the faithful
36 ORPHECS C. KERR PAPERS.
Jocko, whom she discovered on his knees before the
door of the captive's cell, with his right eye slightly
to the left of the knob.
" Jocko !" she exclaimed, reproachfully, '' what are
yon doing here, you ridiculous thing?"
'' Miss LiBBY," said the humble servitor, looming
dimly in the shadow of the hall as he slowly arose
from his feet, "Ise ben prayin' dat you might become
a christian, and one ob these days, when de great
Hallelugerum come, liab wings and a harp."
Scarcely were these aflecting words uttered, when
Mr. Peters tore open the door rather disrespectfully,
so greatly discomposing the devoted black that the
latter incontinently fled.
" My dear girl," said Bob, leading his fair visitor
into the room, " I'm delighted to see you. The shut-
ters are up, the gas is lit, and I'm prepared to do the
sentimental. Oh-um-m — Lubin's Extracts!" ejacu-
lated Mr. Bob Peters. For he had kissed her.
"There, dear Robert, don't be so absurd. You
know you are going to leave us to-night, and I have
brought you — " here Libby blushed with that exquis-
itely ingenuous emotion which is excited by the con-
sciousness of benefiting one we love — " I have brought
you some things that may be of use on your journey.
You won't be angry with me for it, will you, dear
Bob ? There's a smoking cap, and a pair of crochet
slippers, and some drawing pencils, and a volume of
"My darling Libby!" remarked the deeply affected
Robert, alighting on those tempting lips once more.
SECOND SERIES. 37
"But did you think, love — did you tliink to put a
quart of ice-cream and a few hair-pins in the package ?"
" Why, no."
"Ah, well," said Mr. Bob Peters, abstractedly, "1
suppose I can buy them on the road."
Silence, disturbed only by the beating of those two
hearts, reigned for a few seconds, then —
" Bob," said Libby, looking shyly np to him, " we
shall be very happy when we are married and live
" Yes, indeed," said Bob.
"We'll live in such a beautiful house on Fifth
Avenue, dear, and have such nice things. Because,
you know, you can make so much money by your
" Millions ! my love," said Mr. Bob Peters, with
sudden and wonderful quietude of tone. " When I
left Kew York prose was bringing two dollars for
seven pounds in the heavy dalies, and philosophical
poetry quoted at six shillings a yard, and no hexame-
ters allowed except for Emerson and Homer. Ah !"
said Mr. Peters, his melancholy deepening rapidly to
bitterness, " my last poem sickened me. It was called
' Dirge : addressed to a lady after witnessing the
Drama of the "Toodles,"' and commenced in this
Not all the artist's pow t can limn,
Nor poet's grander verse disclose,
The plaintive charm that ev'uing dim,
Imparts unto the dying rose "
" How pretty !" said Lebbt.
38 ORPHEUS C. KERR PAPERS.
" Yes, my dear," responded Mr. Peters, somewhat
gloomily ; '* but because I used ' dim ' to rhyme with
' limn,' all the papers credited it to General Morris."
Recollections of this flagrant piece of injustice so
affected Mr. Bob Peters, that he smote his breast and
called himself a miserable man. " I really don't know
but Pd better stay here and be hung like a respecta-
ble patriot," murmured the desolated young man.
" How absurd !" exclaimed the young lady, " you
-will be glad enough to get away to-night. Remember,
now, you are to start down stairs at quarter-past
Twelve, precisely, and Jocko will open the front door
for you. Then go straight to the bridge, where you
will find my brother, who will get you by the guard."
" That reminds me," observed Mr. Peters, " what
time is it ? I must set my repeater."
LiBBY consulted her watch and answered that it was
half-past eight, whereupon Mr. Bob Peters fished from
his fob a vast silver conglomeration, and having wound
it up with a noise like that of a distant coffee mill,
and set it correctly, proceeded to hang it, for con-
venient reference, upon the gas-branch across the
^^Dear Bob, good bye."
" Fare thee well, and if for ever, still remember
me," responded Mr. I^eters, with some vagueness.
'^ We shall meet again ?" said Ltbby, lingering.
" If I did not believe it," replied Mr. Bob Peters,
with vehemence, " I should at once proceed to kill
myself at your feet, covering the walls and furniture
of the apartment with my gore. "
" God bless you, Bob."
SECOND 8KRIES. 39
They parted wiping their months. Miss Ordeth
went do\Yn stairs in tears, had a fit of hysterics on the
sofa, and fell asleep with her head in the card basket.
CHAPTER V. BETRAYED INNOCENCE.
There he slumbered on that rude lounge, with his
head upon his hands and his hands under his head. A
man, like you — or me — or any other man. Did you
ever notice how you always keep your eyes shut when
you are asleep ? The lids come down over your orbs,
your soul's windows, like night over the sun. You
sball have visions of Heaven, or Hades, according to
what you had for supper. Lobster salad, or truffles,
will act upon a sleeping man's great, dark soul, like
one of Page's pictures on the open eye. Make it see
light blue landscapes, and pallid faces looking out of
pink distances. You tliink that young man there is
sleeping upon a rude couch? 'No. He is sleeping
upon something not palpable to your worldly eyes nor
mine ; he is sleeping upon an empty stomach. You
dare not pity him. His scornful, stern man's soul
would wither you if you talked to him of compassion.
Such is man. An animah A worm of the dust.
Yet proud. Ha ! you know it. You blush for your
unworthy thought. Such is woman. Somethino-
aroused the sleeper suddenly. It might have been an
angel's whisper, or the kiss of an insect. He sprang
to his feet, shook himself, and mentally declared that
40 OEPHEUS C. KEKR PAPERS.
lie had come pretty near getting asleep. The idea was
" By all that's blue ! it can't be, thougli it is, by
The gas was still burning brightly. Mr. Bob Peters
had cauofht sio:ht of his watch as it was reflected in
the mirror, with the hands pointing to a quarter past
Twelve. With great rapidity he grasped the repeater,
stabbed it into his fob, crushed his demoralized hat
upon his head, looked regretfully about the room,
turned off the gas, and in another moment was
stealthily groping his way down stairs, toward the
front door. . The door yielded to his hand, but no
Jocko was there. " I suppose," murmured Mr. Pe-
ters to himself, " I suppose the faithful fellow is pray-
ing for me somewhere in the kitchen, with his hands
resting on ajar of sweetmeats. Ah! I ought to be a
better man than I am." With this excellent moral
reflection, Mr. Bob Peters stepped into the street and
faced boldly for the path to freedom ; but at the very
first corner his road was barred by two individuals in
military caps and the first stage of intoxication.
" Aryupeters — eters !" said one, who was evidently
desirous of having but a single word with him.
'' With a Bob," replied the fugitive sententiously.
" Aw' ri', then," observed the two in chorus, and
Mr. Peters quickly found himself attended on either
side by guardians whose affectionate manner of mono-
polizing his arms suggested a civil process of the most
" Treachery !" he exclaimed, struggling fiercely.
The twain held him tightly, however, with the strength
SECOND SERIES. 4:1
of tight-nns, and liis exertion only caused them to
venture divers pleasant oaths concerning the destiny
of bis eyes.
Onward they dragged him, down Broad street and
up half a dozen other streets, until a certain rebel
institution was gained. " In with'm," said one of his
captors ; • and they hurried him past a sentry and
through a hall into a long, low room, where half a
dozen°miserable candles stuck up against the walls
revealed a dismal company of over a hundred— some
stretched upon the floor, some standing about, and
others clustered around what appeared to be a cot in
"Is this the Confederate Congress?" asked the
astonished Bob, as his captors left him, turning the
key and adjusting various bolts as they went out.
*'It's Libby's pork-packing-houae," answered the
prisoner nearest him, " and you're jugged, I suppose,
as a spy."
"Fork-packing!" ejaculated the bewildered Bob.
" Why, this is treating me like a hog."
Several prisoners at once gave in their adhesion to
this logical premise.
" Here's a case of betrayed innocence !" soliloquized
Mr. Bob Peters, bitterly, " I've trusted to Libby, and
Libby's taken me in."—
" I'm going to be exchanged, I tell you !"
The sound came from the cot in the corner, and as
the crowd in that direction opened for a moment, the
new-comer beheld a sight that, for a time, made him
forget his own troubles. A tall, gaunt man in rag-
ged, Zouave uniform was reclining upon his elbow on
42 ORPHEUS C. KERR PAPERS.
the miserable pallet, the pale, dismal light of the can-
dles disclosing a ghastly wound on his right temple,
from which the blood was trickling down npon his
rusty and matted beard.
" Vm going to be exchanged, I tell you !" he ex-
claimed, waving the others away with his left hand
and glaring directly at Bob. I've been here a whole
year, and Eighty's boys wants me back ; and I'm go-
ing to be exchanged."
" The poor fellow was shot by one of the sentries
this morning. He's from a !New York regiment, and
has been a prisoner ever since Bull Run," whispered
one of the unfortunates to Bob.
The latter approached the wounded man and kindly
asked ; " Can I do anything for you, old fellow ?"
The dying Zouave regarded him with a ghastly
smile ; " Yes," said he, " you can go down to Eighty's
truck house and take care of little Jake till I'm ex-
changed. Will you, bub, will you ?"
" Is Jake your child ?" asked Bob.
" ]^o," responded the Zouave, softly, " it's only a
little yaller dorg. I aint got no wife, nor child, nor no
friend except the masheen and little Jake. He's petty
as a picture, bub, and he's slept with me many a gay
old night around Catherine Market — he has. You'll
be kind to him, bub, won't 3'ou ?"
*'Here! what's this noise about? What are yes
doin' with lights this time ernight ? I'll soon stop
his Yankee groaning," were the words of a brutal
keeper, who had just come in and was roughly elbow-
ing his way toward the cot.
" Stand off, you hound !" shouted Bob, throwing
SECOND SERIES. 43
himself between the keeper and the dying soldier.
" Stand off!" growled the prisoners, fiercely crowding
upon the intruder with murder in tlieir faces.
" Hark !" said the Zouave, leaning listfully forward,
" there goes the Hall bell — one — two — three "
His features lighted up as with the glow of a confla-
gration ; his lips opened —
. '' Fire ! Five ! Fire r
And the Zouave fell back upon the cot — dead.
The keeper crawled forward like a wdiipped hound,
and eyed the outstretched form with a face full of
'' Exchanged at last, by G— d !"
True, O traitorous hireling ! and by God alone.
For when that honest, loyal soul w^ent out, there came
to take its place an xivenging Spirit, that shall not
cease to call on Heaven for vengeance on the South-
ern murderer until the cowardly stain of fifty thou-
sand murders, such as this, are washed out in a terrible
" Poor little Jake," murmured Mr. Bob Peters, " I
w^onder if he's a terrier." Then, turning to the keep-
er, — " How long is my imprisonment in this terrible
place to be continued ?"
The keeper eyed the querist w^ith no very amiable
expression, "You'll stay here," said he, "until you
take the Oath, I reckon."
"In that case, my native land, good niglit," re-
sponded the interesting captive, Byronically ; " my
incarceration will terminate with an epitaph — 'Hio
Jacet Egbert Peters. A victim of miss-placed con-
4:4: ORPHETJS C. KEER PAPERS.
fidence. He died young' — Jailor, you are affected.
Accept a quarter !"
The Cerberus clutclied the proffered coin and eyed
it with feverish intensity. It was evidently the first
quarter he had seen since the commencement of his
services in that hole. The man's better nature was
touched. "Hist !" he said, drawing Mr. Peters aside
and speaking in a whisper : " I can no longer conceal
the truth. I am a Southern Union man."
It is a beautiful peculiarity of our common nature,
mon ami, that crime never sinks so deeply nor perver-
sion spreads so obstinately in the human soul, but
there is still a deeper current of normal rectitude re-
sponsive to the force of currency. That this was
known to the ancients, is evinced by the antique cus-
tom of placing coins on the eyes of the dead, thereby
sio^nifying to all concerned that, whatever faults might
have perished with the deceased, de mortuis nil nisi
" Can't I have a room to myself?'* asked Bob, after
a short pause,
" Follow me," was the response ; and he followed
the keeper through a crowd of curious prisoners, up a
stair-way against a wall, to a room on the next floor.
The keeper opened the door with a key from one of
his pockets, and led the way into an apartment whose
only furniture was a bed, a ricketty chair and a bit of
looking-glass on a shelf.
" I sleep here sometimes myself," said the keeper ;
"but you shall stay here for a small rent. Make your-
SECOND SERIES. 45
"Stop a minute," said Bob, as the man turned to
leave. ''Do you know liow I came to be arrested?"
^' I don't know exactly," was the answer ; " but I
believe you was informed upon by some woman.
Good night. Here's the candle."
The prisoner cast himself upon the bed, as tlie ke}^
grated again in the lock, and was fast asleep before
the poor fellows down stairs had extinguished their
In the morning the friendly keeper brouglit him his
breakfast, consisting of a cup of something very much
like " sacred soil" after a heavy rain, two geological
biscuits and a copy of the Richmond Whig.
"What do you call this stuff ?" asked Mr. Peters,
ruefully eyeing the contents of the cup.
" Coffee," replied the keeper, blandly, " real Mo-
Mr. Peters was silent. To call such fluid Mocha
was sheer mockery.
The biscuits dispatched and the coffee defied, the
captive betook himself to deep and admiring contem-
plation of the newspaper; and was deriving much
valuable instruction from an article written to prove
how skilfully and ingeniously the Southern Confed-
eracy had struck a telling blow at its ruthless invaders
by strategetically surrendering Norfolk, when an
early visitor was admitted. Said visitor was a young
man contained in a picturesquely-tattered uniform,
with a fatigue cap on his head and a rusty sword rat-
tling at his heels.
" Bob, my boy," said he, " how the mischief did you
get into this scrape ?"
46 ORPHEUS C. KERK PAPERS.
"This is some of your family's Chivalry," responded
Mr. Peters, shortly.
"My governor ceitainly did come it over you a lit-
tle," observed the visitor, who was no other tlian the
younger Ordeth ; " but you might have gone off
safely enough if you'd been at the bridge at quarter-
past Twelve, as 3^ou were told. I don't like the gover-
nor's style any more than you do, and if you had
come to time I could have passed you out of the lines
" I did come to time," answered Bob, with great
bitterness, " and a pretty time of night it was. How
did I get into this scrape ? The Southern Confederacy
brought me here. I've had enough of you and your
family. It affords me satisfaction to contemplate a
perspective in which your family are attending a fu-
neral of one of their number whose demise would be
attended with funeral honors, if all his comrades were
not engaged in the work of running away from
Mr. Peters hazarded this cutting insinuation of the
future with an expression of countenance rigidly se-
"But, my dear boy, there is some mistake. You — "
" Oh, very well ; if you won't you won't," exclaimed
the Confederate youth, growing very red in the face.
" All I have to say is, that I have done my part as
your friend. If you liad been at the bridge at quarter-
past Twelve last night, you might be back among the
Yankees now. And, let me tell you, those same Yan-
kees will never conquer the South."
SECOIO) SEEIES. 4:7
" Perhaps not," said Mr. Peters, ironically.
" One of our officers lias just invented a new gun
that will soon teach the North manners," continued
the Confederate, with increasing heat. " It throws
one-hundred-pound balls as fast as a man can turn
" Ah!" said Bob, sneeringly.
"Yes ; and it has but one defect."
'^ What's that ?" asked Bob, with some appearance
"The handle won't turn!" ejaculated the young
Yirginian, darting hastily from the room to hide his
Mr. Peters looked vaguely after the retreating
form of the sensitive youth, and as one of the keepers
relocked the door again from the outside, his face
sank upon his hands. What did his visitor mean by
accusing him of not making his appearance at the ap-
pointed time ? It was exactly quarter-past Twelve
when he left the house. " I see how it is," murmured
Mr. Peters, between his hands ; " the boy has been
taking something hot."
chapter VI. — another visitor.
The ladies were taking their usual promenade
through the main corridor of the jail, curiously gaz-
ing at times through the newly-grated door at the
prisoners in the main room, and seafoning their morn-
48 ORPHEUS C. KERR PAPERS.
ing gossip with piquant observations on the probable
execution of the horrid creatures there confined.
Mrs. Peyton took occasion to inform Mrs. Mason tliat
she wouldn't pass a day without taking a look at the
wretches for all the world ; and Mrs. Mason informed
Mrs. Peyton that her life would hardly be endurable
if she did not live in hope of seeing all the Abolition-
ists there yet. Here young Mr. Baron ventured to
intimate that the Yankee prisoners were fortunate in
being favored with such an array of /azV before them ;
for which he was saluted as an " absurd thing," and
received a shower of taps from adjacent fans.
Miss Adams led her co^npanion, a neighbor's child,
to where a keeper was leaning idly against the wall.
" Are these all your prisoners ?" she asked.
" All but one that was taken last night and is up
stairs," replied the ofiicial.
*' Is that one on exliibition ?"
" I reckon he is, if you want to see him."
" Well," said Miss Adams, with an assumption of
indifference, " I don't know that it's worth while ; but
— well, I reckon I will look at him."
" This way, then, if you please," said the keeper,
leading the way up an adjacent flight of stairs and
conducting the fair one to the room occupied by Mr.
Bob was gazing gloomily out of the window and
did not recognize the presence of his new guests until
the end of a parasol touched his shoulder.
" Miss Adams !" he exclaimed, offering his hand.
The young lady tossed her head haughtily :
SECOND SERIES. 49
"I don't wish to shake hands with an enemy of
my country, sir."
'^ I see," said Bob, coolly, " the presence of a third
party obliges us to vail our emotions. Keeper, leave
*' Pay no attention to him, Keeper," retorted Eve,
indignantly, ^'I wish your attendance."
Not at all abashed by the severity of her tone, Mr.
Peters nodded to the officer and smiled pleasantly.
" Then I must expose you with a witness to it," he
said, good-naturedly ; " you are offended. Miss Eve
because I did not comply with your kind note and
meet your friends at a quarter-of Twelve, instead of
walking straight into trouble at quarter-past, as I did."
" You are beneath my notice," was the answer of
Miss Adams ; " but since you choose to speak so I
must explain myself to this good man here. You are
indebted to me for your present situation. I am a
Southern woman, sir, and it was my duty as a South-
erner, to see that you dil not escape to injure our
cause by telling some of your Northern falsehoods
about us. I wrote you the note you speak of in order
that you might be drawn from your hiding place, and
also one to the authorities putting them on the watch.
I may be a woman, but I have the heart of a man.
If Miss Ada^is did not have the heart of a man it
was owing to no neglect on her part of any possible
means to catch such a heart. That is to say, all her
dearest and most intimate female friends said so.
Her speech was evidently intended to impress the
prisoner with a torturing sense of woman's vengeance,
but, contrary to her expectation, Mr. Peters received
50 OEPHEUS C. KEEK PAPERS.
it with the utmost comphicency. In fact, he even
evinced a playful disposition and favored the attentive
keeper with an insidious wink.
"I don't doubt that your intentions were excellent,
Miss Eve," said Mr. Bob Peters, with an air of great
enjoyment ; " but they did not work as well as your
aflectionate heart designed. Because — you see — I
did'nt come out at a quarter of Twelve at all, nor did
I follow any of your directions. Oh, no ! It was just
quarter-past Twelve by my repeater when I departed
from my late residence, and it's my private opinion
that your dear friend. Miss Okdetu, had the privilege
of being my adviser on that nocturnal occasion.
Don't let your sensitive soul be afflicted with the
thought that yoic have wronged confiding innocence,"
added Bob, pathetically, " for I do assure you that you
are as guiltless as the child unborn.-'
"What do 3'ou mean, sir ?" asked Eve, in some
haste ; " were you not arrested at. a quarter of
"Why no!" said Bob. "Don't I tell you that I
didn't break cover until quarter-past?"
"Well, sir," snarled Eve, with no little irritation,
*' you're here at any rate, and I hoj)e 3'ou'll enjoy the
society of your Yankee friends down stairs. I hope
you'll all be hung. I do."
And the injured fair swept magnificently from the
room, dragging with her the neighbor's child, and leav-
ing Mr. Peters alone with the keeper.
" I say, she's a spunky one," remarked the latter.
" It's a pity you really did'nt wait till quarter-past. I
SECOND SERIES. 51
would'nt trust a woman with such eyes as liers —
" And I didn't trust them," said Bob. " It was full
quarter-past by my repeater when I came out, and if
I'm betrayed it's by another woman."
'* Oh, come now," put in the keeper, deprecatingly,
it's all right, you know, between ns two. It was'nt
but quarter-past when I locked you in here, you
" What !" exclaimed Bob.
" Fact," said the keeper.
Mr. Peters deliberately drew out his watch and
held it up in full view.
" By all that's true !" said Bob, " it was quarter-past
Twelve by that repeater before I was taken last
The rebel official looked steadily into the eyes of
his prisoner for a moment, and then withdrew hur-
riedly and in silence. He evidently mistrusted the
sincerity of Mr Peters, or believed that a man with
such a fast watch was too much ahead of his time to
be trusted without a watch of a different kind.
CHAPTER VII. UNION SENTIMENT DEVELOPING.
If some modern Burton would supply the world
with an Anatomy of Patriotism, moii ami^ I am
inclined to believe that his first discovery in the pro-
cess of dissection would be, that the modern quality
of that name is essentially lacking in the anatomical
52 OKPHEUS 0- KERR PAPERS.
composite of back-bone. Ordinary patriotism in prac-
tice, as far as I liave been able to observe it, is equi-
valent, in general aspect and result, to an irresistible
force in contact with an immovable body, those who
are chiefly carried away with it metaphorically being
the last to yield to its impulsion personally. In short,
the quality appears to be a sentiment rather than
a motive in its character, and moves us to inspire
others rather oftener than it inspires us to move our-
Mr. YicTOR E. Ordeth was a patriot iu the conven-
tional sense of the term, and when the Southern heart
was first fired he took a very large ember to his own
bosom. ISTone could be more ready to repudiate all
tlieir Northern debts than was Mr. Ordeth to repu-
diate his, and hia deadly hatred of the Abolitionist
was only equaled by that of a New England man
owning a colored drayman, and living next door to
him. '"We will raise a million of soldiers if need
be," said the chivalrous Virginian at a public meeting
in Richmond, "and sacrifice our last crust." After
which he went comfortably home and growled very
much at the dampness of his slippers and the barely
perceptible chill in his buttered toast. Great admi-
ration was evoked on all sides by this spirited con-
duct, and when he finally donated one hundred dol-
lars of his creditors' money to the Yolunteer fund,
there was some talk of making him a brigadier ; but
it happened to leak out that he knew something of
military business from early study, and, of course,
that project had to be given up. A brigadier with
military capability would be an anomaly indeed !
SECOND SERIES. 53
And so, this self-sacrificed gentleman meekly wore
his honors in private life, his patriotism deepening
and intensifying nntil it attained the pitch of verbal
perfection demonstrated in the first chapter of this
veracious narrative. Suddenly, however, this patriot-
ism suffered what its possessor's pocket did not — a
" sea change :" the Confiscation Act passed by the
Congress of the United States induced Mr. Okdeth to
consider seriously what might possibly happen to a
certain little property of his near Danville, in the
event of certain Union achievements ; and the news
of McClellan's advance to witliin five miles of
Hichmond, did not tend to increase the patriotic fer-
vor of this chivalrous Yirginian.
It was on the second morning after the summary
incarceration of Mr. Bob Peteks, that Mr. Ordeth per-
emptorily called for his newspaper, and, having ele-
vated his feet upon the window sill, proceeded to
read the more humorous articles of the journal in
question, which were chiefly devoted to the discussion
of divers excellent plans for invading the North in
one column, and burning Richmond in the next. The
only other person in the apartment at the time was
Mrs. Oedets, who turned very pale when her lord
took up his paper, and watched him as he read, with
considerable agitation. She was evidently expecting
an explosion, and it came.
Having perused with mitigated satisfaction a leader
on the sublime nobility of soul evidenced by the peo-
ple who destroyed their city at the approach of the
enemy, Mr. Ordeth turned to the Local Department
of the reduced sheet before him. and was electrified
54: OEPHKUS C. KEER PAPEES.
at the discovery therein of a full and accurate account
of the arrest of " one Egbert Peters, supposed to be
a Yankee spy, who is said to have found refuge for
some time past in the house of a well-known citizen,
and who was seized at the instigation of a devoted
Daughter of the South, who, by a pardonable device,
lured him from his hiding place for that purpose. But
for the disordered state of things just now, the citizen
said to have harbored this fellow would be called to
account for his equivocal concern in the matter."
The paper dropped from the hands of Mr. Ordeth,
and he stared at his wife in utter bewilderment.
"Don't be angry with us, Victor !" exclaimed that
lady, tremblingly ; for she had seen the paper and an-
ticipated what was coming. " Libby hid poor Bob
away because she didn't want to see one of our own
relations taken and hung, and when she told me of it
I didn't dare to tell you."
" And do you mean to tell me that it was in my
house he was secreted?" asked the Viro^inian, trade-
" Yes, my dear, up-stairs, you know."
This unexampled revelation might have produced a
scene, had not the door been opened at the moment
by Jocko, who unceremoniously entered with a folded
paper in his hand.
" Dis wus brung for you, Mars'r, by de angel ob de
— I mean by de gemman wid gold on he shoulder."
The master hastily snatched the paper from the du-
tiful black, waved him magisterially from the pres-
ence, and found himself ordered to report on the fol-
lowing morning for military duty at the headquarters
SECOND SERIES. 55
of tlie military commandant, Eiclimond. A new
draft was ordered !
Passing the paper to liis wife, without a word of
comment, Mr. Ordeth commenced to pace the room
with long and rapid strides. Finally, he stopped short
before his lady's chair : —
" I am beginning to tliink," said he, coolly, " that
the Union is best for the South, after all."
" Yes, my dear."
" And we must be off for Danville this very after-
A pause, and then —
" I was hasty about Bob. My friend, Gteneral
Evans, has just come in from Leesburg. I must ex-
plain this matter to him and get Bob discharged ; for
Bob may be of great service to us, my dear, when the
Yankees take possession."
Mrs. Ordeth understood her husband well enough
to appreciate this remarkable change in his senti-
ments, and refrained from exhibiting any astonish-
ment at this speech. She only answered :
" You know best, Yiotoe."
The head of the house received this judicious reply
in full payment of all demands on his wife's attention,
and immediately went forth to put his designs into ex-
ecution — as fine a specimen of the Southern Union
man as ever welcomed the advent of the loyal army
with enthusiasm, and immediately presented a bill for
damages sustained in the cause of Freedom !
66 OEPHEIJS C. KEER PAPEKS.
CHAPTER YIII. — WITHOTJT END.
Seated upon the lounge where he so often had rest-
ed, with her elbow s resting upon the table on which
his arms had so frequently reposed, sat the afflicted
LiBBY. She had heard her paternal leave the house
an hour before, and she had just heard the sound of
his boots in the hall below as he returned ; but she
felt no desire to learn the reason thereof. Like her
mother, she had seen the account of Mr. Peter's arrest
in the morning paper, and her be^rilderment at the
statement respecting the device used to entrap that
persecuted youth by a Daughter of the South, was
only equalled by her grief at the unfortunate present
predicament of her lover. So absorbed was she in
her sorrows that she heard not the opening of the
parlor door below her, nor the sound of footsteps on
the stairs : —
'" Miss Ordeth !"
Was it a dream ? The beautiful mourner turned
quickly in the direction of the sound, and beheld the
bodily presentment of Mr. Bob Peters, who stood
near the door with his shocking bad hat between bis
hands and an expression of stern reproach upon his
"Bob! — you here?" exclaimed the maiden, starting
from her seat with a little shriek.
" Mr. Peters, if you please, Madame," said the late
captive, with much dignity. " Owing to a great
spread of Union sentiment in the bosom of your pater-
SECOND SEEIES. 57
nal relative, and his consequent representation in my
belialf, I am here, to blast you with the sight of the
innocence you have betrayed ! I slipped up here to
confront you, Madame," observed Mr. Peters, with
some ease of manner, " while the old ones were pack-
ing the silver-plated spoons preparatory to a combined
movement on the peaceful hamlet of Danville."
" What do you mean, you ridiculous thing ?" asked
LiBBY, scarcely believing her own ears;
" That we must part," returned Mr. Peters, calmly
straightening an angle in the rim of his hat. " You
named an hour for my nocturnal escape — quarter-past
Twelve. I fled the Kesidence at that unseemly hour,
though another maiden had previously invited me to
liberty and the pursuit of happiness. I went, and
walked straight into the arms of the unsleeping
Southern Confederacy, who was inebriated at the
time, and conducted me to the penal pork-packing es-
tablishment. Enough! we part. I go to Danville
with you, but only as an ordinary acquaintance of
" Why Bob, what can you mean ?" ejaculated
LiBBY, to whom this remarkable speech was not par-
ticularly lucid ; " it was not my fault that you were
taken. If you had gone at quarter-past Twelve, as I
told you, all would have been well. Oh, Bob, when
Jocko told me next morning that he had waited for
you a whole hour in the hall in vain, and when ma
and I found that you had really gone at the wrong
time, I sat right down and cried my eyes out."
" The wrong time !" exclaimed Mr. Peters, striding
suddenly toward the mirror. " Impossible ! Observe
58 ORPHEUS C. KERB PAPERS.
this repeater of mine, which is a reliable time-piece
On the night in question, this repeater was plainly
before me, hanging on this gas bracket, before this
looking-glass.'' Here Mr. Peters illustrated his asser-
tion by suspending his watch from the bracket, under
which it spun feebly for a moment. " At the very
instant of my waking from a temporary slumber, I
caught sight of this same repeater in the glass, and —
why ! what's this ?"
In a moment every vestige of resentment had faded
from the features of Mr. Bob Peters, and he stood
staring at the reflection of his watch in the glass with
the look of a man in the last stage of wonder.
LiBBT timidly drew near and placed a hand on his arm.
" What's the matter, dear ? '
" What time is it now by the repeater ?" asked Mr.
Peters, excitedly, but without moving his eyes.
" Wh}^, it's ten minutes past Ten," replied Libby,
glancing at the face of the watch as it appeared in the
mirror, and wondering what would come next.
" Look airain ! !" thundered Mr. Peters.
"Why," repeated Libby, half-frightened, "it's ten
minutes past Ten."
Mr. Bob Peters deliberately took down his watch
and pointed convulsively at its face with one finger
The time was ten minutes of Ten !
Mr. Peters' first act was to clasp the maiden to his
bosom and kiss her unceremoniously. Then releasing
her, he took two steps in a popular break-down and
burst into a stentorian peal of laughter.
" I shall have to call Pa," said poor Libby.
" l^ot a bit of it 1" shouted Bob, ceasing his Terpsi-
SECOND SERIES. 59
chorcanism for a moment; " don't you see tlie joke?
It's all in the looking-glass, my pet. When I thought
it was a quarter past Twelve and fled the residence, it
was really a quarter of Twelve — don't you see ? The
looking-glass reversed the hands on the watch .'"
And so it was, mon ami. Hold your own time-
piece with its face to a mirror, and you will " see the
But what can excuse that General who, after lead-
ing the whole country to expect that he would take
Eichmond in time for me to conclude this picture of
Southern life, as I originally planned to do, now
changes his base of operation in a strategic manner,
and introduces a fizzle into romantic literature
Here Smith-Brown, who happened to be awake,
coughed intrusively, my boy, and says he :
''The fault is not the General's, my friend. The
Secretary of War is alone to blame for it. He has
How true was that speech, my boy. The Secretary
is indeed responsible for this literary disaster, as well
for everything else ; and if he ever undertakes to stand
on his own responsibility, he will find plenty of room
to move about.
Orpheus C. Keer.
SETTING FORTH A NEW VILLAINY OF THE INSIDIOUS BLACK REPUB-
LICANS, AND DESCRIBING THE THRILLING CONSTITUTIONAL BAT-
TLE OF DUCK LAKE.
WASHI5GT0S, D., C, July 12th, 1862.
Owing to the persistent stupidity of Congress and
tlie hideously-treasonable machinations of the unscru-
pulous black republicans, my boy, the weather still
continues very hot ; and unless the thermometer falls
very soon, an exhausted populace will demand an im-
mediate change in the Cabinet. I am very warm, my
boy — I am very waiin ; and when I reflect upon the
agency of the abolitionists, who have brought this sort
of thing about for the express purpose of injuring my
Constitution, I am impelled to ask myself: Did our
revolutionary forefathers indeed expire in vain ? O
my country ! my country! it is very warm.
Such weather, my boy, is particularly trying to
Sergeant OTake's friend,
THE IKISH PICKET.
I'm shtanding in the mud, Biddy,
With not a spalpeen near,
And silence, spaichless as the grave,
Is all the sound I hear.
SECOND SERIES. 61
Me gun is at a slio wider arms,
I'm wetted to the bone,
And whin I'm afther shpakin' out,
I find meself alone.
This Southern climate's quare, Biddy,
A quare and bastely thing,
Wid Winter absint all the year,
And Summer in the Spring.
Ye mind the hot place down below ?
And may ye niver fear
I'd dhraw comparisons — but then
It's awful warrum here.
The only moon I see, Biddy,
Is one shmall star, asthore,
And that's fornint the very cloud
It was behind before ;
The watchfires glame along the hill
That's swellin' to the south.
And whin the sentry passes them
I see his oogly mouth.
It's dead for shlape I am, Biddy,
And dramein shwate I'd be.
If them ould rebels over there
Would only lave me free ;
But when I lane against a shtump
And shtrive to get repose,
A musket ball he's comin' shtraight
To hit me spacious nose.
It's ye I'd like to see, Biddy,
A shparkin' here wid me
ORPHErS C. KERR PAPERS.
And then, avourneen, hear ye say,
" Acushla — Pat — machree 1"
" Och, Biddy darlint," then says I,
Says you, " get out of that ;"
Says I, '' me arrum mates your waist,"
Says you, " be daycent, Pat."
And how's the pigs and ducks, Biddy ?
It's them I think of, shure.
That looked so innocent and shwate
Upon the parlor flure ;
I'm shure ye're aisy with the pig
That's fat as he can be,
And fade him wid the best, because
I'm towld he looks like me.
Whin I come home again, Biddy,
A sargent tried and thrue,
It's joost a daycent house I'll build
And rint it chape to you.
We'll have a parlor, bedroom, hall,
A duck-pond nately done,
With kitchen, pig-pen, praty-patch,
And garret — all in one
But, murther ! there's a baste, Biddy,
That's crapin' round a tree.
And well I know the crature's there
To have a shot at me.
Now, Misther Eebel, say yere prayers.
And howld yer dirthy paw.
Here goes ! — be jabers, Biddy dear,
I've broke his oogly jaw I
SECOND SERIES. 63
I was talking some moments ago with aEegimental
Surgeon, who has more patients on a monument than
Shakspere ever dreamed about, and says he : " In
consequence of the great number of troops now about
this city, all the oxygen in the atmosphere is exliaust-
ed, and we are very warm. Had all these troops
been sent to McClellan two weeks ago," says he, using
his lancet to pick a dead fly out of his tumbler, "we
might be able to keep cool now. There is a terrible
responsibility on somebody's shoulders."
That's very true, my boy, and it's very warm.
There was a panic this morning in financial circles,
owing to the frantic conduct of a gambling chap from
the Senate, who has been saving up money to bet on
the fall of Kichmond, and was trying to put it out at
interest. " I'll take seven per cent, for it the first
year," says he, anxiously, " and leave it standing until
national strategy comes to a head."
A broker took it for five years, my boy, with the
privilege of extending the time after each fresh victory.
Speaking of victories, my boy, I was present at the
recent series of triumphs by the Mackerel Brigade, on
the left shore of Duck Lake, and witnessed a succes-
eion of feats ^.alculated to culminate either in the fall
of Eichmond or the fall of the year.
From the head-quarters in the city of Paris to the
brink of Duck Lake, the Mackerels were drawn up in
gorgeous line of battle, their bayonets resembling
somewhat an uncombed head of steel hair, and their
noses looking like a wavy strip of summer sunset. By
their last great stragetical manoeuvre, they had lured
the Southern Confederacy to court its own destruction
64 OEPHEUS C. KERK PAPERS.
by flanldng them at both ends of the line, and they
were only waiting for the master-mind to give them
Samyule Sa-mith advanced from this place in the
staff as I rode ujd, and says he :
" Comrades, the General depends on you to precede
him to glory. We had hoped," says Samyule, feel-
ingly, " to have the company of two French counts in
this day's slaughter ; but those two noble Gauls had
not time to wait, as they desired to visit the Great Ex-
hibition in London."
These remarks were well received, my boy ; and
when the order was given for Company 3, Eegiment
5, to detour to the left, it would have been promptly
obeyed but for an unforeseen incident. Just as Cap-
tain Yilliam Brown was about to break line for the
purpose, an aged chap came dashing down from a
First Family country-seat near by, and says he to the
General of the Mackerel Brigade :
" I demand a guard for my premises immediately.
My wife," says he, with dignity, ''has just been mak-
ing a custard-pie for the sick Confederacies in the hos-
pital, and as she has just set it out to cool near where
my little boy sliot one of your vandals this morning,
she is afraid it might be taken by your thieving mud-
sills when they came after the body. I, therefore,
demand a guard for my premises, in the name of the
Constitution of our forefathers."
Here Captain Bob Shorty stepped forward, and
says he ;
" What does the Constitution say about custard pie,
SECOND SEEIES. 65
The aged chap spat at him, and says he :
"I claim protection under that clause which refers
to the pursuit of happiness. Custard pies," says he,
reasc^ningly, " are included in the pursuit of happi-
" That's very true," says the General, looking kindly
over his fan at the venerable petitioner. "Let a
guard be detailed to protect this good old man's pre-
mises. We are fighting for the Constitution, not
A guard was detailed, my boy, wich orders to make
no resistance if they were fired upon occasionally from
the windows of the house ; and then Captain Yilliam
Brown pushed forward with what was left of Company
3, to engage the Confederacy on the edge of Duck
Lake, supported by the Orange County Howitzers.
Headed by the band, who played patriotic airs as
soon as he could shake the crumbs out of his key-
bugle, the cavalcade advanced to the edge of the lake
and opened a heavy salute of round shot and musketry
on the atmosphere, whilst Commodore Head kept up
a hot fire at the horizon with his iron-plated fl.eet and
Only waiting to finish a game of base ball, in which
they had been engaged, four regiments of Confedera-
cies, at whom this deadly assault was directed, threw
aside their bats and ball dresses, put on their uni-
forms, loaded their muskets and batteries, and sent an
iron shower in all directions. Greatly demoralized by
this unseemly occurrence, a file of Mackerels under
Sergeant O'Fake immediately threw down their mus-
kets and knapsacks, emptied their pockets upon the
66 ORPHEUS C. KERR PAPERS.
ground, piled their neckties in a heap, and were mak-
ing a rapid retrogade movement, when Yilliara sud-
denly threw himself in their path, and says he :
" Where are you going to, my fearless eaglets ?"
" Hem !" says the sergeant, with much French in
his manner, " we thought of visiting the Great Exhi-
bition in London."
"Ah!" says Yilliam, understandingly, "you have
acquired French in one easy lesson, and — "
Here an orderly rode up with an order for the
Mackerels to fall back from tlie edge of the Lake im-
mediately, leaving their artillery, bayonets, havelocks,
and baggage behind them ; and Yilliam was obliged
to conduct the movement, which was a part of the
stratecrical scheme of the General of the Mackerel
Brigade. As we retreated back into Paris, my boy,
we wei*e joined by the Conic Section, and shortly after
by the Anatomical Cavaby, both of which had suc-
ceeded in leaving all their accoutrements on the field.
As we all rushed together before head-quarters in
perfect order, and while the Confederacy was eating
some provisions, which we had refrained from bring-
ing off the late scene of conflict, the General of the
Mackerel Brigade came from under a tree, where he
had been fanning himself, and says he :
" My children, we have whipped them at all points,
and the day is ours."
" Ah !" says Yilliam, abstractedly, " the day is
" My children," says the General, in continuation,
"we have pushed tlie enemy to the wall without frac-
turing the Constitution, and have only put the war
SECOND SERIES. 67
back six months. We can say with pride, my chil-
dren, that we belong to the Army of Duck Lake, and
shall have no more Bull Euns. My children, I love
you. Accept my blessing."
We were reflecting upon this soul-stirring speech,
my boy, and silently admiring the strategy which had
brought us all together again so soon, when the sound
of drum and fife called our attention to a club of poli-
tical chaps who had just arrived by steamer from the
Sixth Ward, and were filing past us to a platform re-
cently erected in the very centre of Paris.
" I do believe," says Captain Bob Shorty, whisper-
ingly, '' I do believe we're going to have a mass meet-
Onward went the political chaps to the platform.
A delegation mounted the steps, advanced to the
front rails, and commenced unfurling a vast linen
banner. The sun was just setting, my boy, and as his
parting beams fell upon the uplifted faces of the polit-
ical chaps, a soft breeze unrolled the standard, and the
Mackerels read upon its folds —
; REGULAR CONSERVATIVE NOMINATION
: PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATE
: IN 1865.
• THE GENERAL OF THE MACKEREL BRIGADE.
Shall it be said, after this, that republics are un-
grateful ? I think not, my boy — I think not. We
68 OEPHEUS C. KEKR PAPEKS.
have won a great and glorious victory, and the only
question remaining to be answered is, Who is respon-
sible for it, my boy — viho is responsible for it ?
Yours, in bewilderment,
Okpheus C. Kerr.
WHEREIN ARE PRESENTED SOME FEMININE REFERENCES, AN ANEC-
DOTE BY THE EXECUTIVE, AND CERTAIN NOTES OF A VISIT TO THE
FESTIVE SHENANDOAH VALLEY.
Washington, D. C, July 19th, 1862.
Permit me to return thanks tliroiigli your mail, mj
boy, for a large feather fan recently consigned to my
address by one of the admiring Women of America.
It looks like a tail freshly plucked from a large-sized
American eagle, and is decorated with a French-plate
mirror in the centre and other French plates around
the edges. The kind-hearted woman of America (who
writes from Boston) says in her presentation note — "I
admire to see a fan in the hands of the sterner sex ; for
it shows that the same hero-fist that grasps the sword
has enough inherent gentleness to wave the cooling
bauble. Such is life. The hand which falls like
a hundred pounds of granite on the flinty eye of his
ke-yuntery's foes has the softness of a blessing when
it caresses the golden head of plastic childhood.
Yours, gushingly, Zepliyrina Percy."
I find the " coolino; bauble" verv nseful to brush the
flies from my gothic steed Pegasus, my boy, and am
a fanatic " to this extent, no more."
70 OEPHEUS C. KERR PAPERS.
And here is what another young woman of America
says to me in a note :
" My ma requests me to tell you that you ought to
be ashamed of yourself, you hateful thing, for encour-
aging the vulgar people to be in favor of this nasty
war, that is causing their superiors so much trouble,
and has driven away the opera, and made enemies of
those nice Southerners, with their beautiful big eyes
and elegant swearing. Why don't you advocate a
compromise, or a Habeas Corpus, or some other paper
with names to it, and get Mr. Lincoln to stop the Con-
stitution and order the war to be ended before there's
any more assassinations and things ? My pa was once
a leatlier banker, and sold shoes for plantation ser-
vants, and made a great deal of money by it ; but now
he's a captain, or a surveyor, or some ridiculous thing,
of the Home Guard, and may be massacred in cold
blood the first time there's a battle in our neighbor-
hood. My pa has to go to drill every night, and when
he comes home in the morning he's so worn out with
exhaustion that I've known him to lay right down in
the hall and shed tears. My ma often says, that if
Beauregard, or Palmerston, or any other foes should
attack our house while pa is in that state, it would kill
her dead. And I know it would make me so nervous
that I should be a perfect fright for a week. My bro-
ther, Adolphus, has likewise joined the Home Guard,
and has already had a bloody engagement with a
Southerner named Tailor, who used to sell him clothes
when the two sections were at peace. Adolphus says
if it hadn't been for his double-quick, or some ridicu-
SECOND SERIES. 71
lous military tiling or other, lie would have been made
a prisoner. It makes me sick to see how much lowness
there is about Adolphus since he joined the ridiculous
army ; he calls his dinner ' rations,' and addresses me
as ' Corporal Lollypop,' (the absurd thing !) and calls
ma's crinoline a ' counter-scarp.'
" My pa says that he shall have to sell the carriage
and the beautiful dog-cart if this hateful war don't end
by the first of next month ; and when I asked him yes-
terday if we couldn't have the gothio villa next to the
Jones's at l^ewport this summer, he actually swore !
The Joneses, you know, are very pleasant, sociable,
vulgar sort of people, with a little money ; and it
would kill me to see them putting on airs over us be-
cause we didn't happen to take a cottage with bow-win-
dows like them. My pa says that old Jones has got a
contract to make clothes for the soldiers, and has made
a great deal of money by manufacturing coats and
other ridiculous things out of blue paper instead of
cloth. Augustus Jones says if he don't meet me at
IS'ewport this summer he will enlist as soon as he comes
back ; and it would be just like the absurd creature to
do it. I don't see why pa can't get out an indictment
or something against the blockade, and call on the
postmaster or some other ridiculous thing to send his
new stock of plantation shoes to Alabama under a
guard, and bring back the money. I don't see the
use of living in a republic if one can't do that much.
My ma says that you newspaper people could stop the
dreadful war if you would only advocate compromises
and things, and not be so ridiculous. Why can't you
leave out some of those absurd advertisements, and
72 ORPHEUS C. KEEE PAPERS.
publisli an article telling Mr. Lincoln that the war is
ruining society ? If it continues much longer, I shall
have to wear my last year's bonnet a whole month,
and I'd rather die. Do say something absurd, you
Have the war stopped right away, my boy, — have
the war stopped right away.
Matters and things here are still in a strategic con-
dition, and naught has disturbed our monotony, for a
week, save a story they tell about the Honest Old Abe.
It seems that two of the conservative Border State
chaps, who are here for the express purpose of pro-
testing against everything whatever, had a discussion
about the Honest Abe, and one chap bet the other
chap five dollars tl)at he couldn't, by any possible
means, speak to the President without hearing a small
" Done!" says the other chap, gleefully, " I'll take
That very same night, at about twelve o'clock, he
tore frantically up to the White House, and com-
menced thundering at the door like King Eichard at
the gates of Ascalon. The Honest Abe stuck his
night-capped head out of the window, and says he :
" Is that you, Mr. Seward ?"
" 1^0, sir," says the Border State chap, glaring up
through the darkness. " I'm a messenger from the
army. Another great strategic movement has taken
place, and our whole army have been taken prisoners
by the Southern Confederacy. In fact," says the con-
SECOND SERIES. 73
Bervative chap, frantically, " tlie backbone of the re-
bellion is broken again."
" Hem !" says tlie Honest Abe, shaking a musquito
from his nightcap, " this strategy reminds me of a lit-
tle story. There was a man, out in Iowa, sat down to
play a game of checkers with another man, inducing
his friends around him to lend him the change neces-
sary for stakes. He played and he played, and he
lost the first game. Then he played much more cau-
tiously, and lost the next game. His friends com-
menced to grumble ; but, says he : ' Don't you worry
yourselves, boys, and I'll show you a cute move
pretty soon.' So he played, and he played, and he
lost the third game. ' Don't be impatient, boys,' says
he; 'you'll see that great move pretty soon, I tell
you.' Then he played with great care, taking a long
time to consider every move, and, by way of change,
lost the fourth game. Close attention to what he was
about, and much minute calculation, also enabled him
to lose the fifth game. By this time his friends
had lent him all their change, and began to think
it was time for that great move of his to come off.'
^ Have you any more change ?' says he. ' Why, no,'
says they. ' Then,' says he, with great spirit, * the
time for that move I was telling you about has come at
last.' Ashe commenced to rise from his chair, instead
of continuing to play, his cleaned-out friends be-
thought themselves to ask him what that famous
move was? ' Why,' says he, pleasantly, ' it's to move
off for a little more change.' "
At the conclusion of this quaint tale, my boy, the
Border State chap fled groaning to his quarters at
74 OKPHEUB C. KEKR PAPERS.
"Willard's, stuck a five-dollar Treasury Note under the
pillow of the other Border State chap, aud immedi-
ately took the evening train for the West.
Such is the story they tell, my boy ; but I'm inclined
to accept it merely as a work of fiction, with a truth-
ful moral. Certain it is, that as strategy increases,
small change grows scarcer, and it is the general opi-
nion that no small change is needed in military mat-
In company with a patriotic democratic chap, who
had come up from Kew York, for the express purpose
of seeing that the negroes of the Southern Confede-
racy were not permitted to inform our forces of the
movements of the enemy in contravention of the Con-
stitution, I made a reconnoisance in force, on Mon-
day, to the festive Shenandoah Valley. On our way
thither, the democratic chap was greatly bitten by
musquitos, for which he justly blamed the black re-
publicans, who are trying to break up this Govern-
ment, and on our arrival near Winchester, we stum-
bled upon a phlegmatic fellow-man in a swallow-tailed
coat and green spectacles, who was seated on a stone
by the roadside, reading the " Impending Crisis."
The democratic chap passed on, swearing, to the near-
est camp ; but I paused before this interesting stu-
" Well, old swallow-tails," says I, afi"ably, ^' what are
you doing in this section ?"
He looked up at me with great severity of counten-
ance, and says he : '* I have come here, young man, to
agitate the Negro Question ; to open African schools ;
SECOND SEEIES. 75
and, perad venture, to start a water cure establish-
"What for?" says I.
" For tlie love of my species," says he, eagerly,
" and for any little contract in the way of red breeches
and spelling books that may be required for the re-
claimed contrabands ?"
Was this a case of purely disinterested philan-
thropy ? Perhaps so, my boy, perhaps so ; but the
old swallow-tails reminded of a chap I once knew in
the Sixth Ward. He Avas a high toned moral chap of
much shirt-collar, with a voice that sounded like a
mosquito in the bottom of a fish-horn, and a chin like
a creased apple-dumpling. Years before he had mar-
ried a Southern crinoline and talked about the glories
of slavery in a polished and high-moral way ; but as
there happened just then to be a chance for him
to run for alderman on the abolition ticket, he expe-
rienced a change of heart, and addressed a meeting
on the evils of human bondage : " My friends," says
he, patting his stomach in a heartfelt manner, " I
once lived at the South and owned slaves ; but never
could I feel that it was right. My pastor would say
to me : ' These men-slaves are black, you say ; but
have they not the same feelings with you, the same
features — only handsomer?" I felt this to be so, tny
friends ; I commenced to appreciate the enormity of
holding human souls in bondage."
Here a susceptible venerable maiden in the au-
dience became so overpowered by her emotions, that
she placed her head in the lap of a respectable single
gentleman, and fainted away
76 ORPHEUS C. KERR PAPERS.
" My friends," contiuued the liigli-toned moral chap,
*' I could not bear the stings of conscience ; my nights
were sleepless, but I slept during the day. There was
I, pretending to be a Christian, yet holding men and
women as chattels ! Heavens himself was outraged
by it, and 1 resolved to make a sacrifice for the sake
of principle — to cease to be a slaveholder ! I called
my slaves together : I addressed them paternally and
piously, and then I— (here the great, scalding tears
rolled down the cheeks of the orator, and the audience
sobbed horribly)— I bade them be good boys and girls,
and then I— SOLD EVERY ONE OF THEM !"
^ * * * *
There was a movement of the audience toward the
door. Men and women went out silently from the
place, exchanging covert glances of smothered agita-
tion with each other. Only one person remained with
the orator. It was an old file with a blue umbrella,
who had occupied a back seat and paid breathless at-
tention to all the performances. After the others had
left the hall, he walked deliberately from his seat to
where the high-toned moral chap was still standing,
and gazed into the face of the latter with an expres-
sion of unmitigated wonder. He then walked twice
around him ; having done which he confronted him
again, thumped the ferule of his umbrella on the
floor, and says he : ^' Well !" Tlie old file paused an
instant, and then says he : " well, TU be dam," and
waddled precipitately from the place.
I've often thought of it since then, my boy ; and
Fve always wondered why it was that the solitary
BECOND SERIES. 77
old file with the blue umbrella should say that he be
To return to Western Yirginia ; I found, upon my
arrival in one of the camps near Winchester, that the
patriotic democratic chap was making arrangements
to divide the army there into Wards, instead of regi-
ments, in order, as he said, that the returns might
come in systematically.
" For instance," sajs he, " suppose that in the skir-
mish with the Confederacy which is going on just
ahead of us, we should lose — say seventy-five votes ;
how much easier it would be to say ; the * Fourth Ward
shows a decrease since last year of seventy-five Ee-
publicans', than to say that such a regiment, of such
a brigade, of such a division, has lost so and so ?"
I was reflecting upon this novel and admirable way
of putting it, my boy, when an orderly came tearing
in, with a report of the skirmishing going on.
" Ha !" says the patriotic chap to him ; "how does
the canvas proceed ?"
" AVell," says the orderly, breathlessly, "Banks' out-
post has lost twenty votes in the Tenth Ward by deser-
tions, and has thirty double-votes wounded ; but I
think Banks can still keep neck-and-neck with Mc-
" You do, hey ?" says the patriotic chap, in great
excitement. " Then McDowell must not lend Banks a
single vote. Tell him to keep his Ward Committees
under cover until Banks gets through with his canvas ;
for if he takes part in that, and the election results in
a victory over the Confederacy Banks will get all the
78 ORPHEUS C. KERB PAPERS.
credit of it, and win tlie card in the next Nominating
So McDowell's votes didn't re-enforce Banks in the
skirmish, my bov, and Banks lost much popularity by
being worsted by the Confederacy.
As soon as the firing had ceased, I went out to meet
some of the returning Wards, and came plump upon
the swallow-tail chap, who was agitating the negro
question in a corner of the late battle-field, surrounded
by fugitive contrabands.
" Friend of the human race," says I, " how now?^'
"Young man," says he, hastily tying a red silk
pocket-handkerchief about his head, " I am teaching
these oppressed beings to spell, having extemporized
a college on the very scene of their recent emancipa-
" How far have the collegians progressed?" says I.
" They have got," says he, " to their a-b, abs. Thus ;
a-b, ab ; o-abo ; 1-i li, aboli ; t-i-o-n shun — abolition."
Shameful to relate, my boy, the swallow-tailed chap
had no sooner said this, than a cavalry ward came
charging helter-skelter, right through the college,
tumbling the faculty into the mud, and bruising sev-
eral sophomore graduates. Simultaneously, the patri-
otic democratic chap appeared on the scene, and in-
sisted upon it that the contrabands should be imme-
diately returned to the Southern Confederacy, as this
is a white man's war. " Otherwise," says he, choleri-
cally, " future reconciliation and reconstruction will
Fearful that I should become confused a little if I
remained there any longer, my boy, I at once retired
SECOND SERIES. 79
from the place, in company with two sick votes, who
were going home on fm*longh, and reached this city
again in good order.
Almost the first fellow-being I met on my return
was a seedy and earnest chap from ^ew York, who
was worth about a quarter in ready money, and had
come to Washington post-haste to pledge the Empire
State's last dollar, and last drop of blood for the vigor-
ous prosecution of the war.
*' See here, my self-denying Brutus," says I, as we
took Eichmond together at the bar, " who commis-
sioned you to pledge so much as all that ?"
" To tell the truth," says the seedy chap, confiden-
tially, " it's all I've got left to pledge. I pledged my
pinchbeck chronometer for three dollars," says he,
sadly, "just before I left 'New York ; and I'm trying
this pledge on speculation."
I have sometimes feared, by boy, that our Uncle
Samuel's concern is turning into a pawnbroking estab-
lishment on a large scale, where they make advances
on everything tangible and intangible, except Kich-
mond, my boy — except Richmond.
Yours, with a presentiment,
Orpheus 0. Kerr.
SUGGESTING MENTAL RELAXATION FOR A TIME, AND INTRODUC-
ING A FAMILIAR SKETCH OF THE WAR-STRICKEN DRAMA IN THE
Washington, D. C, July 23d, 1862.
Yesterday morning, mj boy, I refreslied myself by
a lounge across Long Bridge to the fields about Ar-
lington Heights, where blooming Mature still has ver-
dant spots untrampled by the iron heel of strategic
How pleasant is it, my boy, to escape occasionally
from the society of Congressmen and brigadiers, and
take a lazy sprawl in the fragrant fields. It is the
philosopher's way of enjoying Summer's
DOLCE FAR NIENTE.
Still as a fly in amber, hangs the world
In a transparent sphere of golden hours,
With not enough of life in all the air
To stir the shadows or to move the flowers ;
And in the halo broods the angel Sleep,
Wooed from the bosom of the midnight deep
By her sweet sister Silence, wed to Noon.
SECOND SERIES. 81
Held in a soft suspense of summer light,
The generous fields with all their bloom of wealth
Bask in a dream of Plenty for the years,
And breathe the languor of untroubled Health.
Without a ripple stands the yellow wheat,
Like the Broad Seal of God upon the sheet
Where Labor's signature appeareth soon.
As printed staves of thankful Nature's hymn,
The fence of rails a soothing grace devotes,
With clinginoj vines for bass and treble cleffs
And wrens and robins here and there for notes ;
Spread out in bars, at equal distance met,
As though the whole bright summer scene were set
To the unuttered melody of Best !
Along the hill in light voluptuous wrapt
The daisy droops amid the staring grass.
And on the plain the rose and lily wait
For Flora's whispers, that no longer pass ;
While in the shade the violet of blue
Finds in the stillness reigning nature through,
That which her gentle modesty loves best.
The mill-wheel motionless o'ershades the pool,
In whose frail crystal cups its circle dips ;
The stream, slow curling, wanders in the sun
And drains his kisses with its silver lips ;
82 OEPHEUS C. KEER PAPERS.
The bircli canoe upon its shadow lies,
The pike's last bubble on the water dies,
The water lily sleeps upon her glass.
Here let me linger, in that waking sleep
Whose dreams are all untinged with haunting dread
Of Morning's finger on the eyelids pressed,
To rouse the soul and leave the vision dead.
And while deep sunk in this soft ecstasy
I count the pulse of Heaven dreamily,
Let all life's bitterness behind me pass !
How still each leaf of my oak canopy,
That holds a forest syllable at heart,
Yet cannot stir enough in all its veins
To give the murmured woodland sentence start !
So still — so still all nature far and near,
As though the world had checked its breath to hear
An angel's message from the distant skies !
This one last glance at earth — one, only one —
To see, as through a vail, the gentle face
Bent o'er me softly, with the timid love
That half distrusts the sleep which gives it grace.
The thought that bids mine eyelids half unclose
Pades to a dream, and out from Summer goes,
In the brown Autumn of her drooping eyes.
Thus irregular in rli jtlim and vagrant in measure, my
bov, are the half-sleeping thoughts of a summer noon
SECOND SERIES. 83
in Yirginia ; and it was fnllj an hour before I could
summon enough strength of mind to peruse a letter re-
cently consigned to me by a rustic chap in my native
This chap describes to me what he calls the " Down-
fall of the Dramy," and says he :
" The Dramy is a article for which I have great taste,
and which I prefer to prayer-meeting as a regular thing.
Since the time I wore breeches intended to facilitate fre-
quent spankings, I have looked upon theatrical artiks
with a speeshees of excitement not to be egspressed. I
was once paying teller to a barber artik who shaved a
great theatrical artik, and although the theatrical
artik never could pay for his shaving until he drew
his celery, he always frowned so splendidly when he
turned down his collar, and said : " What ho ! there
Figaro," that my infant mind yearned to ask him for
a few tickets to the show.
This great respek for the dramy has grown with
my hair, and since this high old war has desolated the
dramy, my buzzom has been nothing else but a wil-
derness of pangs. The other evening, my fren —
wliich is courting a six story house with a woman in
the title deed — called at my shattoe, and proposed
that we should wander amid the ruins of the dramy.
" It's rejooced to a skellington," says he, quite mourn-
ful, " and its E plurihus Onion is gone down into the
liocean wave." As my friend used this strong egs-
pression, he tried to wink at me, but didn't get farther
than a hik-cup. Arm-in-arm, like two Siamese-twins
in rejooced circumstances, we walked in speechless
84: OEPHErS C. KERR PAPERS.
silence to what was formerly the entrance half of a
theatre in the pallermy days of the dramy. It was
like the entrance tc the great desert of Sary, and
as we groped our way through the grass to the ticket
office, I observed six wild geeSe and a raccoon in a
jungle that was a nmberella stand in the pallermy
days. The treasurer was entirely covered with cob-
webs, which had been accumulating since the day he
last saw speshee, and v/hen he at last tore himself out,
the sight of the quarter which I handed in sent him
into immediate convulsions.
" Excuse me," says he, " if I weep over this preshus
coin ; but the force of old associations is too much for
this affectionate heart."
He then sent a ffy-blown little boy for a tumbler of
brandy, and was weeping into it copious when we
emerged from his presence. Upon entering the shat-
tered temple of the dramy, we found a vetrun of
1812, which the manager had hired to keep company
with the man what lit the gas, that artik having
declared that if he was kept in solitude any longer he
should shoot himself from sheer melancholy. It was
the vetrun's business to keep moving from seat to
seat until the performance was over, so that the art-
ful cuss of a manager could say " every seat was
okipied" in the next morning's newspaper. When the
manager, who was representing the orkestra with
a comb wrapt in paper, saw me and my fren, he paused
in the middle of his overture, and said we should have
a private box, but that the families of his principal ar-
tika were keepin' house in the private boxes, and was
SECOND SERIES. 85
rajtlier crowded for room. Seeing rae put my hand
in my pocket, he said, tearful :
"Telhim me, I conjure ye, are there any such
things as quarters in the round world ? It is now six
months since I last mingled with the world, and I
really forget how many make a dollar.
Touched to the quick by his plaintiff tone, I drew
forth a quarter, and held it before his anguished vi«
sion. Never shall I forget how his eyes was sot
on that ravishing coin.
" Can it indeed be real ?" says he, " or is it but
a quarter of the mind ?"
I was afeard he might come the " let me clutch
thee" dod^e if I inflamed his imagination any longer ;
so I put it back into my pocket, and axidently revealed
the handle of my revolver.
When my fren had cut the damp grass away from
one of the orchestra seats with his jack-knife, we sat
down and put up an umbrella to keep off the dew. Be-
ing a little nerv^ous, I asked the manager if there was
any snakes about ; and he said he see a couple in the
parroquet last night, but didn't think they had got
down to the orkestra yet. The vetrun, which was the
audience, stoppd chasing a bull-frog in the vestibule
when the manager struck up " Days of Abstinence"
on his comb, and immediately took his seat on chair
No. 1, with which he always commenced. The curt-
ing was then unpinned, and disclosed a scene in a
lumber-yard, with a heavy mortgage on it. The Count
de Mahoginy is discovered in the ak of leaving his
young wife, who is seated on a pile of shavings, for
the purpose of obtaining immediate relief from the
86 ORPHEUS C. KERR PAPERS.
Union Defence Committee. The vetrun received him
with great applause, and moved from seat to seat
as though he was in a hurry to reach the gallery.
When the artik spoke, there was so much empty
stomik in his tones, that my fren said he seemed like
a bean from another world. My fren is a spiritualist.
The artik then went off at the left entrance, and im-
mediately returned in the character of his own uncle,
which had come home from California with two mil-
lions of dollars, and wished, to give it to his affection-
ate nephew and niece. He found his niece in the lum-
ber-yard, and having heard her sad story, divulged his
intention to her and she immediately danced, a Spanish
far (which is French), and sung four songs in honor
of the sixty -ninth regiment. Then the uncle danced a
hornpipe, which he learned on the hocean ; and so
they kept agoin till about nine o'clock, when the
countess said she heard her husband coming. The
uncle was so taken aback by this, that he immediately
made himself into a tableau representing the last
charge of the Fire Zouaves at Bull Kun : and as the
comb struck up " I'm a loan, all a loan," the curtain
was pinned up again. Just as the performance ended,
the manager explained that he could only aford to
keep two artiks — a male and female, and they only
stayed because he had a mortgage on their wardrobes
for over-drawed celery. *' I'll light you to the door,"
says he, taking up one of the foot-lights, which was
a turnip with a candle in it ; " and I hope you'll come
again when we projooce our new play. It's called
' The gas man's last charge,' and introjoces a real gas-
meter and the sheriff."
SECOND SERIES. 87
% fren and I made no reply, but walked sadly
from the ruins with tears in our eyes."
Tlie regular Drama, my boy, cannot hope to suc-
ceed, while the war which now monopolizes all atten-
tion is believed by some critics to be a regular farce.
Oepheus C. Kerr.
SHOWING HOW THE GENERAL OF THE MACKEREL BRIGADE ISSUED
AN AFFECTING GENERAL ORDER ; EXEMPLIFYING THE BEAUTIES
OF A SPADE-CAMPAIGN AS EXHIBITED IN STRATEGY HALL, AND
CELEBRATING A NOTABLE CASE OF NAVAL STRATEGY.
Washington, D. C. , July 26th, 1862.
The high-minded and chivah-ous Confederacy having
refused to consider itself worsted in our recent great
strategic victory near Paris, my boy, it only remained
for the General of the Mackerel Brigade to commence
undermining the Confederacy, after the manner of a
civil engineer ; and when last I visited the lines, I
found a select assortment of Mackerels engaged in the
balmy summer pastime of digging holes, and dying
natural deaths in them.
There was one chap with an illuminated nose, who
attracted my particular attention by landing a spade-
full of sacred soil very neatly in my bosom, and says
I to him :
" Well, my gallant sexton, how do the obsequies pro-
" Beautiful," says he, pausing long enough to take
a powder which the surgeon had left with him. •' We've
just struck a large vein of typhoid fever, and them air
Peninsula veterans, which you see in them holes yon-
SECOND SEEIES. 89
der, are already delirious with it. Really," says the
chap, with an air of quiet enjoyment, as he climbed
into the hospital litter, just sent after him — " really,
there's a smart chance of pushing on our cemetery to
Eichmond before the roads become impassable again."
I was looking after him, as the bearers carried him
off, my boy, when I saw Captain Yilliam Brown am-
bling leisurely toward me on his geometrical steed
Euclid, alternately perusing a paper which he held in
his right hand, and discussing a canteen in his left.
The countenance of the warrior was thoughtful, and
his shovel swung listlessly against the charger's flank.
" How now, my Jack of Spades ?" says I, sportively.
"Ah!" says Yilliam, slowly descending from the
roof of his stallion, and suffering the latter to lean
against a tree, " here is a new Proclamation for the
moral refreshment of the United States of America.
Eead this impartial edick," says Villiam impressively,
" and you will find it worthy of the Union Track So-
I took the official parchment, my boy, and found in-
scribed upon it the following affecting
Whereas, the United States of America now finds
himself engaged in an unnatural struggle with the
celebrated Southern Confederacy, for the Union which
our forefathers planted ; and it being our object to
show the world that our intentions are honorable ; it
is hereby ordered, that the Mackerel Brigade do take
possession of all guns, pistols, and howitzers previously
fired at them by persons now in arms against this gov-
90 ORPHEUS C. KERR PAPERS.
ernment, keeping strict account of said weapons, in or-
der that their owners may be duly and amicably paid
for tliem hereafter. It is further ordered that persons
of Mackerel descent, occupying the cultivated grounds
of the aforesaid Southern Confederacy, shall keep
strict account of the time spent upon the same, in or-
der that reasonable rent may be paid for the same as
soon as the United States of America shall resume
By order of
The General of the Mackerel Brigade.
Green Seal, )
YiNTAGE OF 1776. )
Having perused this document with much attention,
I handed it back to Yilliam, and says I :
" In purity of moral ^one, my hero, that paper is
worthy the descendant of 1776."
" 1776 !" says Yilliam, reflectively. " Ah !" says
Yilliam, " it takes strategy to revive recollections of
those days. We have at least seventeen hundred and
seventy sick ones in our new hospital already. Come
with me," says Yilliam, genially, " and we will survey
the interior aspeck of Strategy Hall."
Strategy Hall, my boy, is a fine airy hospital extem-
porized from a barn, on the estate of a prominent
Southern Union man, now commanding a regiment
of Confederacies. The house itself would have been
taken, as it had somewhat more roof than the barn,
and a little more shade ; but when the General of the
Mackerel Brigade learned that Washington had once
thought of taking a second mortgage on it, he gave
SECOND SERIES. 91
orders that no Mackerel should go within half a mile
of the front door.
On entering Strategy Hall, I beheld a scene calcu-
lated to elevate sickness into a virtue, and shed immor-
tal lustre upon the kind-hearted women of America.
Comfortably stretched upon rails taken from Confed-
erate fences, and of which a strict account had been
kept, with a view to future compensation, were a
whole section of the Mackerel Brigade, in the full
enjoyment of strategic health. Over each chap's
head hung his shovel, and a shingle inscribed with his
name and address. Thus, the shingle nearest me
read: "Spoony Bill, Hose Company 123, New York
And woman — lovely woman ! was there, adminis-
tering hot drinks to the fevered head, bathing with
ice-water the brow of those shivering with the cruel
ague, pouring rich gruel over the chin and neck of
the nervous sufferer, and reading good books to the
raving and delirious. It was with a species of holy
awe that I beheld one of those human angels stand a
hot coffee-pot upon the upturned face of one invalid,
while she hastily flew to fill the right ear of a more
urgent sufferer with cologne-water. And then to see
her softly place one of the portable furnaces upon a
very sick Mackerel's stomach, while she warmed the
water with which his beloved head was presently to
be shaved ; and to see her bending over to ask one of
the more dangerously ill ones if he would not like a
nice fat piece of fresh pork, while the other end of her
crinoline was scraping the head of the Mackerel on
the opposite rail.
92 ORPHEUS C. KEEK PAPERS.
** woman ! in our hours of ease,
Uncertain, coy, and hard to please,
And variable as the shado
By the light, quivering aspen made ;
When pain and anguish wring the brow
A ministering angel thou."
I could have remained here all day, my boy ; for I
found the berries, ice-cream, and liquors, prepared for
the patients, really excellent ; but Yilliam hinted to
me that a splendid piece of naval strategy was just
about to come off on Duck Lake, and I desired to wit
ness our national triumph on the ocean wave.
Having quitted Strategy Hall, I repaired to the
shore of Duck Lake, where numerous Mackerels were
already watching Commodore Head's fleet as it lay
waiting for an expected rebel ram on the treacher-
ous element. It appeared that a lurking Confederacy
in Paris had waited until the Mackerels were all in
their holes one day, and then hastily constructed an
iron-p!ated ram from an old dry-goods box and two
cooking stoves. With this formidable monster, he
designed offering irregular opposition to the Govern-
ment in the way of killing a few vandal regiments,
after which he proposed to repair to the Confederate
side of Duck Lake, and send the particulars of his
victory to Europe through some of the more vigilantly-
blockaded Southern ports. He had completed his
ram, my boy, and hidden it under some hay on the
Lake shore, ready to commence his carnage when the
time came ; but one of the Mackerels happened to see
it when he went fishing, and Commodore Head was
SECOND SERIES. 93
at once ordered to have his iron-plated squadron in
readiness to intercept and destroy the monster when
she should appear.
"Eiddle my turret!" says the Commodore, in his
marine manner, as he sighted his swivel gun and
placed his fishing-rod and box of bait near his stool
on the quarter-deck, " I feel like grappling with half-
a-dozen rams of chivalry — loosen my plates ! if I
And there we stood on that hot July afternoon,
watching the noble craft as she sat like a duck on the
water, the Mackerel crew sitting aft picking a mar-
row-bone, and the venerable Commodore tilted back
on his stool upon the quarter-deck, fishing for bass.
Presently we could see the treacherous Confederacy
stealing down to where his iron-plated monster lay
hidden. Softly he removed the covering of hay, and
cautiously did he place the ram in the water, carefully
examining the priming of the old-fashioned blunder-
buss he carried under his arm, as he stepped into this
new Merrimac, and quietly raising his umbrella with
one hand, while he paddled off with the other.
The distance between our fleet and the spectator
being fully two yards, Yilliam had thoughtfully pro-
vided bits of smoked glass for our party, and we now
brought them to bear upon the scene of approaching
slaughter. The Mackerel crew on board our squadron
appeared to be wholly absorbed in the pleasing expe-
riment of following, with a straw, the motions of a fly
whose wings he had just pulled off, and Commodore
Head had fallen into a refreshing slumber in the midst
94 ORPHEUS C. KEKR PAPERS.
of his fishing. In fact, no means had been left unem-
ployed to guard against a surprise.
Now, it happened that the nautical Confederacy did
his paddling with his back to the bow of his iron-
plated monster, and before he knew it, his ram went
smack against the Mackerel fleet, with a sound like the
smashing of many dinner-plates. So tremendous was
the shock, that the stool upon which Commodore Head
was tilted, gave way beneath his weight, and he came
down upon the deck with a crash like muffled thunder.
Simultaneously, the Confederacy discharged his blun-
derbuss two points to windward, and would have fol-
lowed up his advantage by boarding at once ; but by
this time the Mackerel crew had recovered his pre-
sence of mind, and poured such a shower upon the
intruder from a watering-pot which he found in the
stern-sheets, that the latter retreated in great disorder.
Meanwhile, our gallant old naval hero had regained
his feet, and having carefully put away his fishing
tackle and box of bait, he made his appearance on
the starboard, with his spy-glass under one arm, his
speaking trumpet under the other, and his log-book
between his teeth.
No sooner did the now thoroughly exasperated Con-
federacy behold his venerable figure, than he hastily
shut up his umbrella and violently cracked him over
the head with it, knocking oflf his spectacles, and
greatly damaging his new white hat.
'* Batter my armor !" thundered the commodore,
picking up his spectacles and bending them straight
again. "I don't want you to do that again."
" Scorpion !" roared the Confederacy, dropping his
SECOND SERIES. 95
umbrella, and dancing up and down in his ram, with
his arms in a boxing attitude. " Come on, base old
"Then take thy doom," shrieked the maddened
commodore, quickly striking a match on the bottom
of one of his boots, and touching off the swivel gun.
With a report like the explosion of a deadly pistol,
the trusty weapon hurled its contents about two
inches above the head of the Mackerel crew, wildly
tearing off the cap of the latter, and shaking the
staunch craft from stem to stern.
Somewhat alarmed by this demonstration, the Con-
federacy commenced shoving off with his ram, using
his bhmderbuss and umbrella as oars, and singing the
" Out with the sculls and give chase !" ejaculated
Commodore Head, in a great perspiration. It was
found, upon examination, that the sculls had been
left on shore, and it was further discovered that the
Mackerel fleet was aground ; otherwise our victory
would have been more complete.
With eyes strained to the utmost we were gazing
upon all this from the beach, when Yilliam suddenly
placed a hand upon my arm, and says he : " Hark !"
We listened. There was a sound as of a faint
human cry. It approached nearer. We could distin-
guish words. jS'earer and nearer. The words now
came clear and distinct to our quickened ears.
" Extry a-Her-rr-rr-ald, capture of Yicksburg and
sinking of the rebel ram by Commore Head !"
Since newspapers have become so plentiful in this
once distracted country, my boy, that even the babe
96 OBPHEUS C. KERR PAPERS.
shews them upon its mother's lap, the poorest man
is enabled to see instantaneously, through a glass as
it were, the most distant events — a glass, my boy,
which makes things appear much larger at a distance
than they seem to those close by.
Orpheus C. Kerr.
INSTANCING THE BENEFICENT DEPORTMENT OF THE VENERABLE
GAMMON, AND NOTING THE PERFORMA\'CE OF A REMARKABLE
MORAL DRAMA BY CAPTAIM VILLIAM BROWN.
Washington, D. C, August 2d, 1862.
Some enthusiasm was excited here in the early part
of the week, my boy, by the return of tlie Yenerable
Gammon from a visit to his aged family at Mugville,
whither he goes regularly once a month for the benefit
of the sagacious chaps of the press. A great blessing
is the Yenerable Gammon to the palladium of our lib-
erties, my boy ; for no sooner does our army cease to
change its base of operations, and do other things cal-
culated to make the war interesting and lengthy, than
he pulls out his ruffles, sighs frequently, and melts
away to Mugville. Then all the sagacious press chaps
rush to the telegraph office and flash feverish para-
graphs to the intelligent morning journals : " Highly
important — Sudden departure of the Yenerable Gam-
mon for Mugville to attend the death-bed of a relative
— Believed in military circles that this indicates a
change iu the Cabinet — Border States delegation has
again waited on the President — More vigorous policy
Whereupon the editors of all the intelligent morning
98 OKHPEUS C. KERR PAPERS.
journals ecstatically print the paragraphs, affixing to
them : " Note ly the Editor. — Washington is a town
in the so called District of Columbia — situated on the
Potomac. We infer from our correspondent's dispatch
that it has not yet been taken by the rebels."
American journalism, my boy, in presenting a vast
amount of matter daily, is eminently calculated to im-
press the youthful brain with a keen sense of what a
wide distinction there is between Mind and Matter.
Immediately on the return of the Yenerable Gam-
mon, he commenced saying things, which made all the
rest of mankind seem like withered children in com-
parison with him. He was beaming genially on the
throng at Willard's, and says I to him :
" It would appear, my beloved Pater Patrla, that
military matters are not quite as intejesting as a
woman with a headache just now."
The Venerable Gammon pitied my youth, and waved
his hand fatly by way of a silent blessing to all the
world. " Military affairs," says he, effulgently, " are
like metaphysics. Military affairs," says the Venerable
Gammon, benign an tly, " are like that which we do not
understand — they defy our comprehension and com-
prehend our defiance."
Then all the Congressmeti looked at each other, as
much as to say the Union was saved at last ; and I felt
like a babe in the presence of tlie great Behemoth of
How the Yenerable Gammon has any^thing at all
to do with this war, I can't find out, my boy , but
when the affectionate populace learned that the Yen-
erable Gammon had returned from Mugville, they
8EC0NB SERIES. 99
swarmed around his carriage, and entreated him either
to spit upon them, or save them from slow decay by a
speech. It was then tlie Yenerable man raised his
hand in soothing benediction, and says he :
" My friends, you are young yet. and have much to
learn concerning war. I can only say to you, my
friends, that all goes well with McClellan ; and, if you
will only hasten to till up old regiments, raise a few
thousand new ones, and go yourselves, the advance
upon Richmond may commence at any time."
The most enthusiastic cheering followed this com-
forting speech of the Yenerable Gammon, and six ec-
static cliaps immediately offered to volunteer as major-
Shall we presume to talk of drafting, my boy, when
there is such readiness on the part of the people to
lead the troops ? I think not, my boy, I think not.
Let the draft be protested.
On Wednesday I again took a trip to Paris, accom-
panied by my frescoed dog, BcJogna, and found upon
reaching that city that the Mackerel Brigade had built
itself a theatre, after the manner of Drury Lane, and
was about to partake of the rich intellectual drama.
This chaste temple might possibly be taken for a cow-
shed, my boy, by those who are not conversant with
architecture in one story. It occupies a spot which
has been rising ground ever since the Mackerels com-
menced to dig trenches around it, and the front door is
so spacious that you have to go all around the build-
ing to find where it stops opening. The seats are sim-
ilar to those which are supposed to have been so popu-
lar with the Count de Grasse and the stage is exqui-
100 ORPHEUS C. KERR PAPERS.
sitelj extemporized from several flour-barrels, with a
curtain created from the flannel petticoats recently be-
longing to the wife of the Southern Confederacy.
Passing over all intervening events, my boy, let me
direct your special attention to the night we celebrated,
when I found myself occupying a box (previously used
for crackers) in the temple of the Muses, surrounded
by uniforms and dazzled by the glitter of the shovels
worn by the military celebrities present. In a box
(marked "Sperm Candles — First quality") on my
right, I noticed a number of distinguished persons whom
I did not know, and to the left were grouped several
celebrated visitors with whom I was not acqu tinted.
The stage itself realized numerous brilliant footlights
in the way of bottles containing gorgeous tallow-dips *
and when the orchestra brought out his key-bugle and
struck up the martial strain of *' I want to be an
Angel," there was a dry eye in the house.
(Make a note of this last unparalleled fact, my boy ;
for you, nor any other mortal man, ever heard of its
The curtain having been taken down by a gentleman
who had forgotten to wash himself when the wash-
stand went round last time, the play commenced; and
I found it to be
THE UNION AS IT WAS.
A HIGH MORAL DRAMA, IN ONE ACK.
BY CAPTAIN VILLIAM BROWN. ESKEVIRE.
The plot of this admirable work is very simple, my
boy, and appeals to those sentiments of the human
SECOND SERIES. 101
Leart which affect the liver. The scene is laid in
Washington, where it has been frequently seen, and
the drama opens with a fine
Abram, spare the South,
Touch not a single slave :
Nor e'en by word of mouth,
Disturb the thing we crave.
'Twas our forefather's hand
That Slavery begot ;
There, Abram, let it stand
Thine Acts shall harm it not.
At the conclusion of this spirited JSTational Anthem,
the Border States chaps who have been singing it are
invited to have another interview with the President,
who has only seen them twice the same morning. As
they pass out, the celebrated Miss Columbia appears,
wrapt in deep thought and the American flag, and
reading the twenty-third proclamation for the current
month. She asks her heart if she is indeed divorced
—if her once happy Union is indeed broken ; and as
her heart refuses to answer any such common ques-
tion, a doubt is allowed to remain in the bosom of the
spectator. In deep agony she kneels at the monu-
ment of Washington and softly sings ''Hail Colum-
bia," while the Southern Confederacy, who has just
arrived, proceeds to plant batteries all round her,
assisted in the work by reliable contrabands. After
some moments spent in prayer for the repose of Secre-
l02 ORPHEUS C, KERR PAPERS.
tarj Welles, Columbia discovered her snrronndings,
and is about to make a faint, when the spirit of Xapo-
leon appears, and tells her she has nothing to fear, as
he is about to change his base of operations, and take
Eichraond. He tells her he would have taken it long
before but for the Tribune. This is a very fine scene
— very fine. The spirit of Napoleon then proceeds to
pick up everything he can find and throw it over
to the Southern Confederacy, at the same time swing-
ing himself around so that his left fist may be presented
to the enemy instead of his right, only pausing long
enough to drive back a reliable contraband who has
started to desert to him. Matters are progressing ad-
mirably, and the Confederacy has only planted 24
more batteries around Columbia, when the Conserva-
tive Chorus comes tearing back to the scene, with the
news that the President has determined to pay for all
runaway slaves in postage-stamps ! This splendid
stroke of policy so completely staggers the Confe-
deracy, that he only erects thirty-two more batteries,
and acknowledges that his back-bone is broken:
Strange to say, Columbia still labors under the delu-
sion that she is in danger ; but is finally re-assured
by the spirit of Kapoleon, w^ho convinces her that all
is going well, and at once draws his shovel and com-
mences to dig a hole. Columbia asks : " Wherefore
this digging?" To which the response is :
*' Our Union in its broken state
Is discord to the soul :
And therefore are we digging here
To make the Union hole."
SKCOIS'D SERIES. 103
The digging proceeds until the spirit of ITapoleon is
sunk deep into the earth, when the Southern Confe-
deracy deliberately steps over the hole and captures
Wasliino^ton, at the same time orderino^ Columbia to
black his boots. (Columbia would be utterly bereft
of hope at this turn in affairs but for the cheerful con-
duct of the Conservative Chorus, who bid her rejoice
that the good old times have come again. Columbia
then remembers that she did indeed black the boots
of the Confederacy in the good old times, and it sud-
denly flashes upon her that the Union is, in truth, re-
stored — AS ]T WAS.- A brilliant blue light is thrown
upon tlie scene, and as the curtain falls the Conserva-
tive Chorus are seen in the act of taking all the credit
to themselves and indignantly refusing to pay tlieir
war taxes. ^
This affecting drama of real life was played en-
tirelj' by gifted Mackerels, my boy, the one who acted
Columbia being possessed of a voice as musical as
that w^iich sometimes comes from between the teeth
of a new saw.
When the last round of applause had subsided, and
I was leaving the theatre, 1 came ujDon the dramatist,
Captain Villiam Brown, who appeared to be waiting
to hear what I had to say about his work. Says I to
" Well, my versatile Euripides, your play resem-
bles the better dramas of ^schylus, inasmuch as it is
all Greek to me."
" Ah !" says Villiam, hastily assuming the attitude
in which Shakspere generally appears in his pictures.
" Did I remind you forcibly of the bard of Avon ?"
104 OEPHEUS C. KEEK PAPERS.
" Yes," says I, kindly ; " you might easily be taken
for Shakspere — after dark."
As I turned to leave him, my boy, I could not help
thinkino" how often the world will call a man a "Sec-
ond" So-and-so, long before he has anything like
commenced to be first, even.
Okpheus C. Kebk.
REPORTING THE SECOND REGULAR MEETING OF THE COSMOPOLITAN
CLUB, AND THE BRITISH MEMBEr's CITATION OF THE ENGLISH
Washington, D. C, August 5th, 1862.
This is a dull day, my boy ; and when there is no
longer any sunshine to make steel baj^onets and brass
buttons glimmer to the eye, war is stript of half its
pomp, and the American mind takes a plain, practi-
cal view of the strife.
Truth to tell, this secession is a very shabby, unroman-
tic thing to fight about. There is really no poetry at
all about it, my boy, and when one would rhyme
about it, the mantle of poesy refuses to fall upon him,
though a bogus sort of Hood may possibly keep him
in countenance. The cause of this war is simply
PER SE. ,
Sepoys — sea-thieves —
C. Bonds — see slaves —
See seizures made in every kind of way ;
Bee debts sequestrated —
Sea-island frustrated ;
Segars — leditionists — and C S. A.,
106 ORPHEUS C. KERR PAPERS.
Seduced from honor bright —
Secluded from serenest Wisdom's lisht —
Sea-pent by ships of war —
Selected planters for the world no more ;
Severely snubbed by all —
Secure to fall ;
Sedately left alone by all who see
Seed poisonous sown in sectional retrogression ;
See-saw diplomacy, sedition foui^er se;
Sequel — that serio-comic scene —
Speaking of poetry ; I attended the meeting of the
Cosmopolitan Club on Monday night, and was much
electrified by the treaures of British literature unfolded
by Smith-Brown. That double-cliinned chap brought
to view a roll of manuscript, and says he :
"Instead of reading a story for your entertainment,
gentlemen, I propose to make you acquainted with
the war-sentiments of a few of Albion's poet's, as ex-
pressed in certain unpublished verses of theirs which
have privately come into my possession.
"First, let me commend to your attention some
amiable rhymes by a bard who knows more about this
blarsted country than it knows about hitself " :
A MISTAKE BY HEAVEN !
By Dr. Charles Mack—y.
In Heaven's Chancery the Records stand
Of men and deeds in each and ev'ry land,
And as new rulers rise, or empires fall,
Appointed angels make a note of all.
SECOND SERIES. 107
To mark the changes in this world of late
There came a Spirit from the Throne of Fate,
Instructed closely, to be sure and see
Who earth's chief rulers for this year might be.
His task accomplished, back the Spirit flew
To Heaven's Chancery, as bade to do,
And from his vestments took the mystic scroll
That named each potentate, from Pole to Pole.
Recording Angels glanced it sharply o'er,
To note each change from what the Records bore ;
But found no nations changing potentates
Until they came to the United States.
"Another President I" the angels sighed,
" Another President!" the Fates replied ;
And straight a pen the Chief Recorder took
To write the ruler's name within his book.
He wrote — (alas I 'twill hardly be believed
The very angels could be so deceived) —
He wrote the name that all his sprites might read-
Not Abr'am Lincoln ; no I but — Thurlow Weed.
1 1 # # # J I # - * M
If foreign nations fail to judge your cause
In strict accordance with set Christian laws,
It is no proof of their intending crimes,
Since angels, even, make mistakes at times !
108 OKPHEUS C. KEEK PAPERS.
We were all silent after that, my boy, and says the
old British chap :
"The next manuscript expresses the conservative
sentiment of Britain's Isle, the measure being pecu-
liar and the manner inquiring. H attention ! —
BY SIDNEY DOBELL.
Oh, the war, the war.
Oh, the war, the war,
Oh, the war —
With pools of gory, drippiug grime,
And ghastly, beastly, horrible rime,
The soldier bloody, stiff and stark —
The cannon thunders, hark I hark !
Columbia, how's the war ?
Oh, the blood, the blood,
Ok, the blood, the blood,
Oh, the blood —
Curdliog, welling, staining the ground.
Bubbling from wounds with sick ning sound
The life gone out in a wind of swords, —
Murderers leagued in hordes ! hordes !
Columbia, how's the blood ?
Oh, the roar, the roar,
Oh, the roar, the roar,
Oh, the roar — [
SPX'^XD SEKIES. 109
Thousands grappling, tearing to death,
Fever, madness and hell in a breath ;
Rage, despair, oath and scream —
Kivers crimson stream I stream !
Columbia, how's the roar ?
Oh, the blaze, the blaze,
Ohy the blaze, the blaze.
Oh, the blaze,
Homes in flames, lighting the storm.
Torches for death in a brother's form ;
Ruin, ravage, ashes and smoke, —
Hopes and heart-strings broke I broke !
Columbia, how's the blaze ?
Oh, the groan, the groan,
Oh, the groan, the groan,
Oh, the groan —
Mothers sonless, homeless and old,
Sisters brotherless, lone and cold,
Children starving, wailing for bread, —
Fathers and brothers dead ! dead I
Columbia, how's the groan ?
Oh, the woe, the woe,
Oh, the woe, the woe.
Oh, the woe.
Cities famishing, villages still.
Blood in the valley and fire on the hill ;
110 ORPHEUS C. KEPwK PAPERS.
Horror, havoc, curses and tears, —
Dark desolation for years ! years I
Columbia, how's the woe ?
Oh, the end, the end,
Oh, the end, the end,
Oh, the end.
Griefs and graves at every hearth,
Heaven offended, outraged Earth :
Prayers for vengeance from ev'ry tomb —
Borne to the living a doom I doom I
Columbia, how's the end ?
Here Bonbon, the French cliap, struck in, and says
he : " Oh, the ass, the ass, Oh^ the ass, the ass. Oh, the
*' Silence, Xapoleon !" says the British chap, " and
r-r-remember ^yaterloo ! The next metrical gem,"
says he, ''illustrates the deeper profundity of British
thought, and conveys a moral lesson of the deepest
significance to babes and sucklings. Hem !" —
BY MARTIN FARQUHAR TUP R.
I hold it good — as who shall hold it bad ?
To lave Columbia in the boiling tears
I shed for Freedom when my soul is sad.
And having shed proceed to shed again :
For human sadness sad to all appears,
And tears men sometimes shed are shed by men.
SECOND SIJilES. Ill
The normal nation lives until it dies,
As men may die when they have ceased to live ;
But when abnormal, by a foe's surprise,
It may not reach its first-appointed goal ;
For what we have not is not ours to give,
And if we miss it all we miss the whole.
Columbia, young, a giant baby born,
Aimed at a manhood ere the child had been,
And slipping downward in a strut forlorn,
Learns, to its sorrow, what 'tis good to know,
That babes icho walk too soon, too soon begin
To walk in this dark vale of life below.
When first the State of Charleston did secede,
And Morrill's tariff was declared repealed,
The soul of Freedom everywhere did bleed
For that which, having seen, it sadly saw ;
So true it is, deati,-wounds are never healed,
And law defied is not unquestioned law.
The mother-poet, England, sadly viewed
The strife unnatural across the wave.
And with maternal tenderness renewed
Her sweet assurances of neutral love ;
A mother's love may not its offspring save ;
But mother's love is still a mother's love.
Learn thou, Columbia, in thine agony.
That England loves thee, with a love as deep
As my " Proverbial Philosophy "
Has won for me from her approving breast ;
The love that never slumbers cannot sleep.
And all for highest good is for the best.
112 ORPHEUS C. KERR PAPERS.
Thy Freedom fattens on the work of slaves,
Her Grace of Sutherland informeth me ;
And all thy South Amboy is full of graves,
Where tortured bondmen snatch a dread repose ;
Learn, then, the race enslaved is never free.
And in thy woes incurred, behold thy woes.
Thy pride is humbled, humbled is thy pride.
And now misfortunes come upon thee, thick
With dark reproaches for the right defied.
And cloud thy banner in a dim eclipse ;
Sic transit gloria gloria transic sic,
The mouth that speaketh useth its own lips.
Thus speeds the world, and thus our planet speeds ;
What is, must be ; and what can't be, is not ;
Our acts unwise are not our wisest deeds,
And what we do is what ourselves have done ;
Mistakes remembered are not faults forgot,
And we must wait for day to see the sun.
I looked up at Sraith-Brown, my boy, and says I :
" What does lie mean by the ^ State of Charleston,'
my fat friend ?"
" Why," says he, " that's a poetic license, or Amer-
ican geography diluted by the Atlantic. And here
we have something by the gifted hauthor of 'Locks-
ley Hall,' which it is somewhat in that vein :
SECOND SERIES. 113
BY ALFRED TEN-
Westward, westward flies the eagle, westward with the set-
To an eyrie growing golden in a morning just begun ;
Where the world is new in promise of a virgin nation's love.
And the grand results of ages germs of nobler ages prove ;
Where a prophecy of greatness runs through all the soul of
And the miracle of Freedom blesses in a living truth ;
Where the centuries unnumbered narrow to a single night,
And their trophies are but planets wheeling round a central
Where the headlands breast the Ocean sweeping round crea-
And the prairies roll in blossoms to the Ocean of the West ;
Where the voices of the seas are blended o'er a nation's
In the harmony of Nature's hymn to Liberty on earth.
Land of Promise I Revelation of a loyalty that springs
From a grander depth of purple than the heritage of kings
From the inner purple cherished at the thrones of lives sub-
Cast in glorious consecration 'neath the plough of Father
Home of Freedom, hope of millions born and slain and yefc
Shall the spirit of the bondless, caught from heaven, fail in
114 ORPHEUS C. KERR PAPERS.
Shall the watching world behold thee falling from thy starry
Like a meteor, in thine ending leaving only darker night ?
Oh I my kinsmen, Oh I my brothers — fellow-heirs of Saxon
Lo the Eagle quits his eyrie swifter than a swallow darts,
And the lurid flame of battle burns within his angry eye,
Glowing like a living ember cast in vengeance from the sky.
At thy hearth a foe has risen, fiercer yet to burn and kill,
That he was thy chosen brother — friend no more, but broth-
er still ;
For the bitter tide of hatred deeper runs and fiercer grows.
As the pleading voice of Nature addeth self-reproach to
Strike ! and in the ghastly horrors of a fratricidal war,
Learn the folly of your wanderings from the guiding North-
ern Star ;
What were all your gains and glories, to creation's fatal loss
When ye crucified your Freedom on the cruel Southern
Oh I my brothers narrow-sighted — Oh ! my brothers slow
What the phantoms of the fallen ever whisper in the ear ;
God is just, and from the ruins of the temple rent in twain
Rises up the invocation of a warning breathed in vain.
All thy pillars reel around thee from the fury of the blow,
And the fires upon thine altars fade and flicker to and fro ;
SECOND SERIES. 115
Call the vigor of thy manhood into arms from head to foot,
Strike I and in thy strife with error let the blow be at the
So thy war shall wear the glory of a purpose to refine
From the dross of early folly all the honor that is thine ;
So thine arms shall gather friendship to the standard of a
Blending in its grand approval British hearts and British
Form thy heroes into armies from the mart and from the
And their ranks shall stretch around thee in a bristling, liv-
ing shield ;
Take the loyal beggar's ofi'er ; for the war whose cause is
Breathes the soul of noblest daring into forms of meanest
Let thy daughters wreathe their chaplets for the foreheads
of the brave,
Let thy daughters trace their lineage from the patriot's
honored grave ;
Woman's love is built the strongest when it rests on woman's
Better be a soldier's widow than a meek civilian's bride.
Onward let thine Eagles lead thee, where the livid Southern
Courts the incense for the heavens of a righteous battle won ;
And the bright Potomac, winding through the fields unto
Shall no longer mark the libel — what is bond and what is
ll6 OEPHEUS C. KERR PAPERS.
Rising from the fierce ordeal washed in blood and purified,
See the future stretch before thee, limitless on every side ;
And in all the deep'ning envy of the nations wed to sloth,
Mark the record of thy progress, see the mirror of thy
Kising from thy purifying, like a giant from his rest,
Thou shalt find thy praise an echo from the East unto the
Thou shalt find thy love a message from the South unto the
Each its past mistake of duty finding out and casting forth.
And thy States in new communion, by the blood they all
Shall be wedded to each other in the pardon of the dead ;
Each, a scale of steel to cover vital part from foreign wrong,
All, a coat of armor guarding that to which they All belong.
Thou shalt measure seas with navies, span the earth with
Catch the dawn upon thy banner and the sunset on thy sails ;
Northern halls of ice shall echo to thy sailor's merry note,
And the standard of thy soldier on the Southern isle shall
Turning to thy mother, England, thou shalt find her making
Of the Great Republic westward, born of strength that she
has lost ;
And thy Saxon blood shall join ye, never to be torn apart,
Moving onward to the future, hand in hand and heart to
SECOND SERIES. 117
At the conclusion of tliis last reading, my boy, we
separated. When we are 'Mieart to heart" with
England, my boy, the heart that is underneath may
possibly have ceased to beat.
Yours, to beat, or not to beat,
Orpheus C. Kerb.
PORTRAYING A SOCIAL EFFECT OF THE POSTAGE-STAMP CURRENCY,
DESCRIBING THE GREAT WAR MEETING IN ACCOMAC, RECORDING
THE LATEST EXPLOIT OF THE MACKEREL BRIGADE, AND INTRODUC-
ING A DRAFTING ITEM.
Washington, D. C, August 9th, 1862.
If tired Nature's sweet restorer, balmy Sleep, should
ever take it into her head to invade our distracted
conntrj", she would meet with less resistance in Wash-
ington than it is possible for tlie able-bodied mind to
comprehend. Notwithstanding the fact that Presi-
dent Lincoln is an honest man, my boy, the genius of
Slumber has opened a large wholesale establishment
here, and the tendency to repose is so general that
the authorities are just able to wink at secession sym-
phatliizers. It takes so long to get the news of the
war from Xew York, that our citizens grow languid in
the intervals. On Monday, indeed, an enterprising
chap from Nantucket opened a Museum on the out-
skirts of the town, by way of varying the monotony,
and quite a numerous crowd assembled to witness the
performance. This Museum comprises a real two
shilling piece, inclosed in a strong glass case, to pre-
serve it from the violence of the mob, and even
respectable old married men go to see it, for the sake
of past associations. On the occasion .f my visit to
SECOND SERIES. 119
this niiiqne establishment I arrived shortly before the
exhibition began, and found a brilliant array of
beauty and fashion for an audience. It was quite
interesting, my boy, to hear the conversation going
on. There was a fine young chap just in front of me
wlio has recently been appointed to the staff of the
Commander-in-Chief in consequence of his great expe-
rience in the coal business, and says he to another
Lubin's Extracts chap :
"Fwedwick, who is that wavishing creatchah ovah
they-ar, with the Peach-Orchard eyes and Lehigh
"Aw, dimmy," says Lubin'y Extracts, "that's the
great heiress. She's worth eighty thousand postage-
" The wed kind ?" says the young staff-chap, eagerly
— "is it tlie sticky wed Kind, Fwed?"
"Ko,"says Lubin's Extracts, scornfully ; "it's the
green ten cent kind."
" Intwojoose me," says the staff-chap, excitedly —
* intwojoose me, Fwed ; I must know her — upon my
soul I must."
Upon his soul, my boy — he said upon his soid !
When it is possible for an introduction to take place
upon such a soul as that, my boy, it will be compara-
tively able to manoeuvre an elephant brigade on the
extreme point of an infant needle.
When the manager of the Museum came out to lec-
ture upon his great natural curiosity, tliere was imme-
diate silence; and when the case was uncovered, re-
vealing the quarter to full view, several very old gen-
120 OKPHEtJS C. KEKR PAPERS.
tlemen fainted! Alas! tliej remembered the time
when — but no matter now — no matter now.
'* Ladies and gentlemen," says the manager, point-
ing solemnly to his treasure, "the rare and beautiful
coin which you now heboid was well known to our
forefathers, who stamped the figure of Liberty upon
it, in order to show tlie world that this is the only
country where man is at Liberty to deal in slaves by
way of financial sj^eciilation. Tliis rare coin disap-
peared as soon as the Libert}^ I speak of seemed to be
endangered, nor w^ill it reappear in this country again
while there are so many brokers ahead."
On quitting this admirable exhibition, my boy, I did
not return to this city, but went immediately down to
Accomac, to attend the great L^nion meeting. Acco-
mac, my boy, has at length determined that this war
shall be vigorously carried on, even if it takes several
public speakers to say so ; and the conduct of Acco-
mac, in calling a meeting for such a purpose, reminds
me of a chap in the Sixth Ward.
He was a respectable family chap, who had formed
a partnership with all his neighbors for the express
purpose of taking entire and exclusive charge of their
business for them, and evinced such a deep interest in
the most private afifairs of his friends, that absence
did not conquer their love for him. One Sunday there
was a city missionary at the church he attended, w^ho
implored the aid and prayers of the congregation in
behalf of a poor but pious family, who were starving
to death around the corner. " Hev any tracts been
left with our suffering frens ?" says the respectable
chap, rising in his pew and pinching his benevolent
SECOND SERIES. 121
chin thoughtfully. " Yes," says the missionary, sadly,
** we sent them some tracts on the immortality of the
soul ; but, horrible to relate, they gained no flesh by
them." The respectable chap, who was a baker by
profession, was mucli moved by this revelation of
human depravity, and says he to a bald-lieaded chap
in the next pew : "Brother Jones, you must attend to
this sad case in the morning. We must remember our
fellow- beings in affliction, Brother Jones. Early to-
morrow you must take some bread to this suffering
family. If you have no bread of your own. Brother
Jones," says the respectable chap, feelingly, " come to
my shop and I — I will sell you some for this charita-
ble purpose." But Brother Jones proved to be a
grievous backslider, my boy, and said he had an
engagement to go to Hoboken on the morning in
question. " Very well," says the respectable chap,
when he heard this, " then I will arrange it in another
way. Tell our starving brothers and sisters to have
faith," says he to the missionary, in a heartfelt man-
ner, " and they shall be fed, even as the ravings fed
my old friend Elijah." So, the next day he called a
meeting of brethren to pray that food might be sent
to the suffering ones, and they used up the entire En-
glish language in prayer to such an extent, that when
the respectable chap topped off with a benediction, he
had to introduce some Latin quotations. They had
just finished this noble work of Christian benevolence,
when the missionary came tearing in, and says he :
" It's all over; they're all dead ; the last child starved to
death half an hour ago." The respectable chap stared
at him aghast, and says he : " Did you tell them to
122 ORPHErS C. KERB PAPERS.
have faith ?" The missionary cracked a peanut, and
says he : " Yerily, I did ; but they said they couldn't
have faith on empty stomachs." The respectable chap
pondered a while, and says he : ^' If they didn't have
faith, my frens, the whole matter is explained. We,
at least, have done our duty. We have prayed for
them, frens — we have prayed for them." And the
brethren went home to their dinners.
Public mass meetings, my boy, to help a struggling
country, are like prayer-meetings to aid the starving
poor ; the intention is good, but the practical benelit
resulting therefrom is not visible to the naked eye.
There was a large meeting at Accomac, several new
liquor-shops having been opened there recently, and
the speakers were as eloquent as it is possible for men
to be when advidng other men to do what they don't
care to do themselves. A chap of large abdominal
developments was specially fervid. Says he : " Let us
show to them as is tyrants and reveling in the agonies
of down-trodden Europe, that this Republic is able to
put down all enemies whatsomever, without inter-
fering with any of the inalienable rights of those who,
though our enemies, are still our long-lost brothers.
(Frantic applause.) Shall it be said that twenty-two
millions of people cannot put down eight millions
without injuring those eight millions? (Shrieks of
approbation, and cries of "That's so !") 'No ! a thou-
sand times no! We fight, not to injure the South;
not to interfere with them,w^hich is our own flesh and
blood, but to sustain the Constitution rendered sacred
by Eevolutionary gore ! (Overwhelming enthusiasm.)
The creatures which is trying to break up this here
SECOND SERIES. 123
beneficent Government, ask us what we are fighting
for, then ? Gracious hevings ! what a question is this!
Do they not know what we are fighting for — that in
this unhappy struggle we— that our purpose, I would
say, in prosecuting hostilities is to — is to — DO IT?
Of course it is."
This speech, short, terse, and to the purpose, was
gloriously received by everybody, except a friendless
chap, who said he didn't understand the last clause ;
and he was immediately sent to jail for daring to be so
Though the General of the Mackerel Brigade was
seated upon the highest barrel on the platform, my
boy, and blew his nose louder than any one else, he did
not wish to be seen, nor did he intend that the assem-
blage should call upon him for the speech sticking out
of his side-pocket ; but when the throng accidentally
found him to be the most prominent figure in sight,
they thoughtlessly called upon him to say something.
The General laid aside his fan with some embarrass-
ment, and says he :
" My children, I love you. My children," says the
General, motioning to his aid to fill the tumbler again,
*'I 'daresay yon expect me to say something, and
though I am unprepared to speak, there is one thing I
will say. If anything goes wrong in this war, nobody
is to blame, as I alone am responsible. Bless you,
As the idol of the populace finished these touching
remarks, and resumed his tumbler and fan, there was
but one sentiment in the whole of that vast assem-
blage, and a democratic chap immediately went and
124 ORPHEUS C. KERK PAPERS.
telegraplied to Syracuse that the prospect for a Demo-
cratic President in 1S65, was beautiful.
The meeting might have lasted another week, my
boy, thereby rendering the Union cause utterly invin-
cible, but for the imprudence of an insane chap who
proposed that some of the young men present should
enlist. This malapropos and singularly inconsistent
suggestion broke up the assemblage at once, in great
disorder — volunteering being just the last thing that
any one thought of doing. Greatly edified and en-
couraged by what I had heard, my boy, I made all
haste for Paris, where I found the Mackerel Brigade
and Commodore Head's fleet in great excitement over
the case of an Irish gentleman who believed this to be
a white man's war, and had started for Paris, just
fourteen minutes after landing in this country, for the
express purpose of protesting against any labor being
performed by negroes, while there were white men to
do it. Colonel AVobert Wobinson, of the Anatomical
Cavalry, quieted him by saying that, although a num-
ber of negroes were then engaged in digging trenches,
a new line of holes in a far more unhealthy place
would be commenced in the morning, aud that none
but Irishmen should be permitted to dig them.
On the night previous to my arrival, my boy, while
all the Mackerels were watching the stars with a view
to prevent any surprise from that quarter, the South-
ern Confederacy on the other side of Duck Lake trained
four large fowling-pieces upon their peaceful camp
from behind a wood-pile, and commenced a ferocious
and ear-splitting bombardment. It was some hours
before our men could be got into position to return the
SECOND SERIES. 125
fire, as Captain Bob Shorty had forgotten where they
had put the Orange County Howitzers when last using
them. The fleet, too, was somewhat delayed in getting
into action, as Commodore Head experienced somedif^
Acuity in unlocking the box into which he always puts
his spectacles and slow-match before retiring at night.
Finally, however, the howitzers were discovered
behind some boards, and the spectacles and slow-
match were forthcoming, and our troops were pouring
a hot fire across Duck Lake before the Confederacy
had got two-thirds of the way back to Richmond.
IS'ext morning, my boy, the Conic Section crossed the
Lake, and cleared away everything on the opposite
shore except the before-mentioned wood-pile. The
latter contains the same kind of wood that was burned
in the time of Washington, my boy, and twenty men
were appointed to guard it from the profanation of
our troops. We must protect such property at all
hazards, my boy, or the Constitution becomes a nul-
Having crossed the treacherous element to view the
immediate scene of these proceedings, and learned
from Captain Yilliam Brown that our pickets were
within ten miles of the Confederacy's capital, I was
about to make some short remark, when a messeno-er
came riding forward in a great perspiration, and
says he ;
" Our pickets have been driven in."
" Ha !" says Yilliam, " is the Confederacy again ad
vancing upon the United States of America ?"
" Our pickets," says the messenger, impressively
126 OEPHEUS C. KEEE PAPEES.
" have been driven in ; tliey have been driven into
" Ah !" says Yilliam, pleasantly, " then send out some
I strolled away from the pair, my boy, reflecting
upon the possibility of enough Mackerel pickets reach-
ing Richmond in this way to make the Union senti-
ment there stronger than ever, and was looking list-
lessly to my footing, when I chanced to espy a paper
on the ground. Picking it up, I found it to be a note
from the wife of the Southern Confederacy to her
cousin, dropped, probably by one of the Confederacies
of the wood-pile. It bore the date of April the First,
and read as follows :
"Deae Juleyee: — I have just space of time to
write you these few lines, hoping that these few lines
will find you the same, and in the enjoyment of the same
blessing. O my unhappy country ! how art thou suf-
fering at this present writing ! I have not had a sin-
gle new bonnet for two weeks, my beloved Juleyer,
and my Solferino gloves are already discolored by the
perspiration I have shed when thinking of my poor,
dear South. My husband, the distinguished Southern
Confederacy, is so reduced by trials, that he is a mere
skeleton skirt. Oh, my Juleyer, how long is this to
continue ? Ere another century shall have passed
away, the Yankees will have approached nearer
Charleston and Savannah, and the blockade become
almost efi'ective. Since the Mackerel Brigade has
changed its base of operations, even Richmond seems
doomed to fall in less than fifty years. Everything
SECOND SERIES. 127
looks dark. Tell me the price of dotted muslin, for
nndersleeves, wlien you write again, and believe me,
Your respected cousin,
"Mks. S. C."
There's only one thing about this letter bothers me,
and that's the date, my boy — the date.
When very near this city, on my return home, I met
a chap, weighing about two hundred and twenty-five
pounds, who was on his way to a lawyer's to get his
exemption from the draft duly filed.
" See here, my patriotic invalid," says I, skeptically,
" how do you come to be exempt?"
"I am exempt," says he, in a proudly melancholy
manner, " because I am sufi'ering from a broken
" Hem," says I.
*' It's true," says he, sniffling dismally. " I asked
the female of my heart to have me. She said I hadn't
enough postage-stamps to suit her ideas of personal
revenue, and she didn't care to do my washing. That
was enough : my lieart is broken, and I am not an
Drafting, my boy, is of a nature to develop the
seeds of disease in the hitherto healthy human system
— seeds which, if suffered to fructify, will be likely to
ultimate in what gentlemen of burglarious accom-
plishments would chastely and botanically denominate
a very large-sized " plant."
Orpheus C. Kerr.
CONTAINING FRESH TRIBUTES OF ADMIRATION TO THE DEVOTED
VrOMEN OF AMERICA, AND DEVELOPING THE GREAT COLONIZATION
SCHEME OF THE GENERAL OF THE MACKEREL BRIGADE FOR THt
BENEFIT OF THE BLACK RACE.
Washington, D. C, August 15th, 1862.
Once more, my boy, this affectionate heart would
render tribute of gushing admiration to the large
souled women of America, who are again commencing
to luxuriate and comfort our majestic troops with gifts
almost as useful to a soldier as a fishing-pole would be
to the hilarious Arab of Sahara. As I ambled airily
near Fort Corcoran on Monday, my boy, mounted on
my gothic steed Pegasus, and followed by the frescoed
dog Bologna, after the manner of the British nobility,
I chanced upon a yeteran of the Mackerel Brigade,
who had come up from Paris on one of tliose leaves of
absence which grow from the tree styled Sycamore.
He was seated under a waj'side oak, examining some
articles that had recently come to him in a package ;
now and then addressing his eyes in tlie more earnest
language of the Sixth Ward.
Having reined-in my spirited architectural animal,
and merely pausing to administer a crumb of cracker
from my pocket to a hapless blue-bottle fly which had
SECOND SERIES. 129
rashly alighted from the backbone of the charger, and
was there starving to death, I saluted the Mackerel
veteran, and, says I :
" Comrade, wherefore do you select this solitary
place to use language only fitting a brigadier when ho
is speaking to an inferior officer, or a high-toned con-
servative when referring to negroes, Wendell Phillips,
and the republican party V'
The veteran Mackerel signed deeply, as he spread
open the package to full view, my boy, and says he,
" Are you a married man, my cove?"
" jS'o," says I, with a feeling of mingled insignificance
and financial complacency, ''I never paid a milliner's
bill in my life."
" ^N'either did I," said the veteran, with a gleam of
satisfaction, " neither did I ; I always has them charged
to me ; but still I am the wedded paixlner of one
which is a woman. I have loved her," says the vete-
ran passionately, " I have loved her better than I
loved number Three's masheen, with which I was
brought up, and that seemed to me like my own bro-
ther. I have stayed home from a fire more than once
to go to church with her ; and the last words I said to
her when I come here was : ' Old woman ! if Six's
foreman comes here after that wrench, while I'm away,
tell him I'll break that nose of his when I come
back!' We was all confidence together," says the
veteran, smiting his chest, madly ; " and I never threw
a brick that I didn't tell her of it, and now she's gone
and sent me a copy of the Temperance Pledge, a pair
of skates, two bottles of toothache drops, and six
130 ORPHEUS C. KEEH PAPERS.
sheets of patent fly-paper. I really believe,*' says the
veteran, bitterly — "I really believe that she thinks I
ain't got nothing to do here but to keep house and
take care of an aged grandmother."
At the conclusion of this unnatural speech, my boy,
I hastily trotted away upon my architectural steed;
for I had not patience enough to talk longer with one
whose whole nature seemed so utterly incapable of
appreciating those beautiful little attentions which
woman's tender heart induces her to bestow upon the
beloved object. Since the last time I was sick, my boy,
I have entertained a positive veneration for the won-
derful foresight of that blessed sex, whose eyes remind
rne of pearl buttons. At that period, when the doc-
tors had given me up, and nothing but their absence
seemed capable of saving my life, one of the prevalent
women of America heard of my critical condition,
and, by her deep knowledge of human nature, was
enabled to rescue me. She sent me a bottle of stuff,
my boy, saying, in a note of venerable tone, that it
had cured her of chapped hands several times, and she
hoped it might break my fever. With a tliankful, con-
fident heart, I threw the bottle out of the window, my
boy, and got well in less than three months.
The other day, I went down to Accomac again, to see
the General of the Mackerel Brigade, who had invited
me to be present while he made an offer of bliss to a
delegation from that oppressed race which has been
the sole cause of this unnatural war, and is, therefore,
exempted from all concern in it.
The General, my boy, was seated in his temporary
room of audience when I arrived, examining a map of
SECOND SERIES. 131
the Border States through a powerful magnifjing-glass,
and occasionally looking into a tumbler, as though he
expected to find something there.
"Well, old Honesty,' says I, affcibly, '• what is our
next scheme for the benefit of the human race ?"
He smiled paternally upon me, and says he :
" It is my purpose to settle the I^egro Question in
accordance with the principles laid down in the Book
of Exodus. Thunder!" says the General, w^ith magis-
terial emphasis, " if we do not secure the pursuit of
happiness to the slave, even, we violate the Consti-
tution and become obnoxious to the Border commu-
I was reflecting upon this remark, my boy, and won-
dering what the Constitution had to do with the Book
of Exodus, w^hen the delegation made its appearance,
and caused the room to darken perceptibly. ]N"ot to
lose time, the General waved his hand for the visitors
to be seated, and, says he :
" You and we are diflferent races, and for this reason
it must be evident to you, as well as to myself, that it
is better you should be voluntarily compelled to colon-
ize some distant but salubrious shore. There is a wide
difference between our races ; much wider, perhaps,
than that which exists between any other two races.
Your race suffers very greatly, and our race suffers in
suffering your race to suffer. In a word, we both suf-
fer, which establishes a reason why our race should
not suffer your race to remain liere any longer. You
who are here are all present, I suppose."
A voice — " Yes, sah."
"Perhaps you have not been here all your lives.
132 ORPHEUS C. KERK PAPERS.
Your race is sufi'ering tlie greatest wrong that ever
was ; but when you cease to suffer, your sufferings are
still far from an equality with our sufferings. Our
white men are now changing their base of operations
daily, and often taking Malvern Hills. This is on
your account. You are the cause of it. How you
have caused it I will not attempt to explain, for I do
not know ; but it is better for us both to be separated,
and it is vilely selfish in you (I do not speak unkindly)
to wish to remain here in preference to going to Kova
Zembla. The fact that we have always oppressed you
renders you still more blameable, especially when we
reflect upon the fact that you have never shown resist-
ance. A trip on your part to JS'ova Zembla will bene-
fit both races. I cannot promise you much bliss right
away. You may starve at first, or die on the passage ;
but in the Revolutionary "War General Washington
lived exclusively on the future. He was benefit,
ting his race ; and though I do not see much simila-
rity between his case and yours, you had better go to
Nova Zembla. You may think that you could live in
Washington, perhaps more so than you could on a
foreign shore. This is a mistake. IS'one but white
army contractors and brigadiers on furlough can live
Ihe festive isle of Xova Zembla has been in existence
for some time, and is larger than any smaller place I
know of. Many of the original settlers have died, and
their offspring would still be living had they lived long
enough to become accustomed to the climate. You
may object to go on account of your affection for our
race, but it does not strike me that there is any cogent
SECOND SERIES. 133
reasons for such affection. So you had better go to
Nova Zenibla. The particular pUice I have in view for
your colonization is the great highway between the
North Pole and Sir John Franklin's supposed grave-
It is a popular route of travel, being much frequented
by the facetious penguin and the flowing seal. It has
great resources for ice-water, and you will be able to
have ice cream every day, provided you supply your-
selves with the essence of lemon and patent freezers.
As to other food, I can promise you nothing. There
are fine harbors on all sides of this place, and though
you may see no ships there, it will be still some satis-
faction to know that you have such admirable harbors.
Again, there is evidence of very rich bear-hunting.
When you take your wives and families to a place
where there is no food, nor any ground to be cultivated,
nor any place to live in, then the human mind would
as naturally turn to bear-hunting as to anything else.
But if you should die of starvation at the outset, even
bear-hunting may dwindle into insignificance. Why
I attach so much importance to bear-hunting is, it will
afford you an opportunity to die more easily than by
famine and exposure. Bear-hunting is the best thing
I know of under such circumstances.
You are intelligent, and know that human life de-
pends as much upon those Avho possess it as upon any-
body else. And much will depend upon yourselves if
you go to Nova Zembla. As to the bear-hunting, I
think I see the means available for engaging you in
that very soon without injury to ourselves. I wish to
spend a little money to get you there, and may possibly
134: ORPHEUS C. KERR PAPERS.
lose it all ; but we cannot expect to succeed in anything
if we are not successful in it.
The political affairs of ITova Zembla are not in quite
such a condition as I could wish, the bears havingr
occasional lights there, over the body of the last Es-
quimaux governor ; but these bears are more generous
than we are. They have no objection to dining upon
the colored race.
Besides, I would endeavor to have you made equals,
and have the best assurance that you should be equals
of the best. The practical thing I want to ascertain
is, w^hether I can get a certain number of able-bodied
men to send to a place offering such encouragement
and attractions. Could I get a hundred tolerably intelli-
gent men, with their wives and children, to partake of
all this bliss ? Can I have fifty ? If I had twenty-five
able-bodied men, properly seasoned with women and
children, I could make a commencement.
These are subjects of very great importance, and
worthy of a month's study of the paternal offer I have
made you. If you have no consideration for your-
selves, at least consider the bears, and endeavor to re-
concile yourselves to the beautiful and pleasing little
hymn of childhood, commencing :
" I would not live always ;
I ask not to stay."
At the termination of this flattering and paternal
address, my boy, the delegation took their hats and
commenced to leave in very deep silence; thereby
proving that persons of African descent are utterly
SECOND SERIES. 135
insensible of kindness and much inferior to the race
at present practising strategy on this continent.
Colonization, my boy, involves a scheme of human
happiness so entirely beyond the human power of
conception, that the conception of it will almost pass
for something inhuman.
Yours, Utopian ically.
Okpheus C. Kebr.
GIVING A FAMILIAR ZOOLOGICAL ILLUSTRATION OF THE " SITUATION,'
AND CELEBRATING THE BRILLIANT STRATEGICAL EVACUETION OF
PARIS BY THE MACKEREL BRIGADE.
"Washington, D. C, August 22, 1852.
On Monday morn, my boy, whilst I was pulling
on a pair of new boots that have some music in their
soles, there arose near my room door a sound as of
one in dire agony, closely followed by a variously-
undulated moan, as of some deserted woman in dis-
tress. Hastily discontinuing my toilet, and darting to
the threshold, I beheld one of those scenes of civil war
which impress the sensitive soul with horror and meet
the just reprobation of feeling Albion.
Rampant between two marrow-bones, my boy, was
my frescoed dog, Bologna, eyeing, with horrid fury,
Sergeant O'Pake's canine friend, known as Jacob
Barker, and ever and anon uttering sentences of super-
natural wrath. To these the excited Barker responded
in deep bass of great compass, his nose curling with
undisguised disdain, and his eyes assimilating to that
insidious and iiery squint which betokens inexpressi-
ble malignity. There was something not of earth, my
boy, in the frescoed Bologna's distortion of counten-
ance as he attempted to keep an eye on each bone,
SECOND SERIES. 137
and at the same time look fall in the face of his foe ;
and there was that in the sounds of his straii> which
betokened Sirius indecision.
As I gazed upon these two infuriated wonders of
natural history, my boy, and recognized the fact that
that the existence of two bones in contention pre-
vented an actual battle, because neither combatant
was willing to lose sight of either of them ; whilst the
presence of but one bone would have simplified the
matter, and precipitated a decisive conflict, I could
not but think that I saw symbolized before me the
situation of our distracted country.
The United States of America, my boy, and the
well-known Southern Confederacy, are like two iras-
cible terriers practising defiant strategy between two
bones, the one being the festive negro-question, and
the other the Union. Now it seems to me, my boy —
it seems to me, that if the gay animal with U. S.
on his collar would only dispose of the bone nearest
him without further vocalism, there would be a better
chance for him to secure the other bone in the combat
sure to come.
Dogs, my bo}^, and men, are very much alike in
their hostile meetings, neither seeming to know just
exactly which is truly their magnum bomcm.
Ascending the roof of my architectural steed, Pe-
gasus, on Tuesday, I induced the gothic animal to
adopt a pace sometimes affected by the fleet tortoise,
and went down to Accomac in pursuit of knowledge
respecting recruiting. Just before reaching that Ar-
cadian locality, my boy, I met Colonel Wobert Wobin-
son, of the Western Cavalry, who had been down
138 ORPHEUS C. KERR PAPERS.
there to induce volunteering and infuse fresh confi-
dence into the masses. He offered a bounty of two
hundred dollars ; three dollars to be paid immediately,
and the rest as soon as the war commences in ear-
nest ; and promised to each man a horse physically
incapacited from running away from anything.
" Well, my bold dragoon," says I, cordially, noti-
cing that Pegasus had already fallen into a peaceful
doze, "how go enlistments?"
The colonel waved away an abstracted crow that
was hovering in deep reverie over my charger's brow,
and says he : "I have enlisted all the people of Acco-
" I want to know," says I, Bostonianly.
" Yes," says he, ''I called a meeting, and succeeded
in enlisting all — their sympathies."
As I gazed upon the equestrian warrior, my boy,
methought I saw the youngest offspring of a wink
trembling in a corner of his right eye, and I felt that
the world renowned Snyder was at that moment labor-
ing under a heavy incubus. Such is life.
The state of health in Accomac indicates that the
demon of disease is abroad in the land, looking chiefly
for his victims among those between the tender ages
of eighteen and forty-five. Instead of having a sling
in his hand, like the young warrior David, each young
man I met had his hand in a sling, whilst the dexter
leg of more than one able-bodied patriot suggested
the juvenile prayer of " N^ow I lame me, down to
slip." And there were the women of America fairly
crying in terror of the draft, instead of bearing them-
selves like the Spartan ribs of old.
SECOND SERIES. 139
Alas I my boy, why cannot our people realize, that
a nation, like a cooking-stove, cannot keep up a steady
fire without a good draft. We need men for the crisis,
and we only find cry sisses for the men.
I could not stay here, so I hastened on to Paris,
where a great strategic movement was about to sup-
ply all the world with fresh recollections of the late
Napoleon. I say late Napoleon, my boy, because our
Napoleon is apt to be behind time.
As far back as I can remember, I have been fully
aware that this movement was about to take place, but
would not, like too many other correspondents, betray
the confidence reposed in me. This bosom, my boy, this
manly and truthful bosom, is about the right shop for
confidence. Nor is it like the bosoms of those who
can truthfully say that they never gim important in-
formation to the enemy, though every body knows
that they sell it.
On arriving in Paris, I saw at once that preparations
for outgeneraling the deceived Confederacy had already
commenced ; for the down-trodden General of the
Mackerel Brigade had assembled the reliable contra-
bands whom he had used for some weeks past, and
was taking leave of tliem in a heart-felt manner.
Mounted on a small keg, from the bung hole of
which came the aroma of pleasant rye fields, the Gen
eral softly wiped his lips, and says he :
" Being members of a race which we regard as a
speshees of monkeys, my black children, the fact that
this is a white man's war will prevent your taking part
in the entirely difi'erent race about to come ofi". After
the manner of Andrew Jackson at New Orleans, I
140 OEPHEUS C. KEER PAPERS.
have called upon you to do something for your adopted
country ; but as my friend Andrew was particular to
make his proclamation read ^free negroes,' there can
be no parallel between the two cases further. There-
fore, return to your masters, my children, and tell
them that the United States of America wars not
against them rights of which you are a part. Go ! And
remember, that as Gradual Emancipation is about to
come off, you will soon know the juicy richness of be-
ing free to visit all parts of the world, except those not
included in the pleasing map of Kova Zembla."
The contrabands departed, my boy, in blissful pro-
cession, and many of them are undoubtedly happy
enough now. Happier, my boy, than they could hope
to be if suffered to remain in this conservative and
While the Mackerels were coming out of their holes,
and polishing their shovels for the march, I observed
that the general walked thoughtfully to his tent, in
deep silence. I found Captain Yilliaijn Brown expel-
ling two reporters from the lines, lest they should pre-
maturely divulge the movement then going on to the
Confederacy seated on an adjacent fence, and says I
to him :
*' Tell me, my fiery warrior, wherefore is it that the
chieftain seeks his solitary tent ?"
"Ah!" says Yilliam, reverently, "it is to pray for
the cause of liberty and the rights of man, after the
manner of George Washington, Mount Yernon, Yir
ginia. Come with me, my cherub," says Yilliam
piously, " and you shall see martial greatness in a
SECOND SERIES. 141
We went softly to the tent together, my boy, and
there belield the beloved general of the Mackerel Bri-
gade, with his face devoutly upturned. His face was
devoutly upturned, my boy ; but we could see some-
thing intervening between his coimtenance and the
sky, and discovered, upon closer inspection, that it was
a tumbler. Can it be, my boy, that this good man
thought that Heaven, like any distant earthly object,
could be brought nearer by looking toward it through
a glass ? Here is food for thought, my boy — here is
food for thought.
And now. Commodore Head having fished his iron-
clad fleet from the tempestuous bosom of Duck Lake,
and everything being in readiness — the march of the
Mackerel Brigade commenced, with a silence so in-
tense that we could distinctly hear all that anybody
First, came a delegation of political chaps from the
Sixth Ward, conversing with each other on the state
of the country, and considering eight hundred and
forty excellent plans for saving the Union, and getting
up a straight-out ticket.
Then appeared the well-known promenade band of
the Mackerel Brigade, executing divers pleasant Tnor-
ceaux on his night-key bugle, an occasional stumble
over a stone giving the airs a happy variety of sudden
Next appeared the idolized General of the Mackerel
Brigade, modestly refusing to receive all the credit for
the skillful movement, and assuring his staff that he
really would not prefer to be President of the United
States in 1865.
142 OKPHETJS C. KERR PAPERS.
Followed by Commodore Head, with his squadron
on his shoulders, swearing as usual in bis iron-plated
manner, and vowing to capture Yicksburg before he
was twenty years older.
Then advanced Captain Yilliara Brown, Eskevire,
Captain Bob Shorty, and Captain Samyule Sa-mith,
each indignantly rejecting the idea that this movement
was a retreat, and expressing the hope that AYendell
Phillips would be immediately hung for it.
Then came a train of wagons containing all the pro-
visions that could not be thrown away.
Succeeded by the Mackerel Brigade with shovels at
a shoulder-arms, and noses suggestive of strawberry
patches in the balmy month of June.
And was this all the procession ? you will ask ; did
nothing come after the Brigade itself ?
I am not a positive man, my boy, and care not to
assert a thing unless I positively know it to be true.
It was growing dark when we reached our destination,
and I could not see distinctly toward the rear : yet I
think I did see something coming after the Mackerel
What was it ?
It was the Southern Confederacy, my boy — the
Orpheus C. Kerr.
SHOWING HOW THE COSMOPOLITANS MET AGAIN, TO BE INTRODUCED
TO THE '^ NEUTRAL BRITISH GENTLEMAN," AND HEAR MR. BON-
BON's FRENCH STORY.
Washington, D. C, August 25th, 1862
Ever since the Britisli chap read all that unpub-
lished British poetry at the Club, my boy, I have
been anxious to favor him with an " Idyl," written by
a friend of mine who has traveled much in Albion,
and writes ex-cathedra. Last night there was a fair
chance, and I then introduced
THE NEUTKAL BRITISH GENTLEMAN.
Incrusted in his island home that lies beyond the sea,
Behold the great original and geniune 'Tis He ;
A paunchy, fuming Son of Beef, with double weight of chin,
And eyes that were benevolent—but for their singular tend-
ency to turn green whenever it is remarked that
his irrepressible American cousins have made an-
other Treaty with China ahead of him— and taken
This Neutral British Gentleman, one of the modern time.
14:4: ORPHEUS C. KERR PAPERS.
With William, Duke of Normandy, his ancestors, he boasts,
Came over from the shores of France to whip the Saxon
And this he makes a source of pride ; but wherefore there
Such credit to anEnglishman — in the fact that he is descend-
ed from a nation which England is forever pretend-
ing to regard as slightly her inferior in everything,
and particularly behind her in military and naval
affairs — we really cannot see.
This Neutral British Gentleman, one of the modern time.
He deals in Christianity, Episcopalian brand,
And sends his missionaries forth to bully heathen land ;
Just mention " Slavery " to him, and with a pious sigh'
He'll say it's 'orrid, scandalous — although he's ready to fight
for the Cotton raised by slaves, and forgets how he
butchered the Chinese to make them take Opium,
and blew the Sepoys from the guns because the
poor devils refused to be enslaved by the East In-
dia Company — or his phi-lan-thro-py.
This Neutral British Grentleman, one of the modern time.
He yields to Brother Jonathan a love that passeth show —
"We're Hanglo-Saxons, both of us, and carn't be foes, you
But as a Christian Englishman, he cannot, cannot hide
His horror of the spectacle — of four millions of black beings
being held in bondage by a nation professing the
largest liberty in the world, though in case of an
anti-slavery crusade the interests of his Manches-
ter factors would imperatively forbid him to — take
part on either side.
This Neutral British Gentleman, one of the modern time.
SrCOKD SERIES. 145
Now seeing the said Jonathan by base rebellion stirred,
And battling with pro-slavery, it might be thence inferred
That British sympathy, at last, would spur him on to strife ;
But, strange to say, this sympathy — is labelled " Neutral-
ity," and consigned to any rebel port not too close-
ly blockaded to permit English vessels, loaded with
munitions, to slip in. And when you ask Mr. Bull
what he means by this inconsistent conduct, he be-
comes virtuously indignant, rolls up his eyes, and
says : '* I carn't endure to see brothers murdering
each other and keeping me out of my cotton I
carn't, upon my life !"
This Neutral British Gentleman, one of the modern time.
Supposing Mr. Bull should die, the questioa might arise :
Will he be wanted down below, or wafted to the skies ?
Allowing that he had his choice, it really seems to me
The moral British Gentleman — would choose a front seat with
his Infernal Majesty ; since Milton, in his blank
verse correspondence with old Times, more than
once hinted the possibility of Nick's rebellion
against Heaven succeeding ; and as the Lower Se-
cessia has cottoned to England through numerous
Hanoverian reigns, such a choice on the part of the
philanthropical Britisher would be simply another
specimen — of his Neutral-i-ty I
This Neutral British Gentleman, one of the modern time.
When Smith-Brown had heard that, my boy, he
sniffed grievously, and says he: "England never wa%
happreciated in this blarsted country."
I believe him, my boy.
It being Bonbon's turn to read a story, he unrolled
his papers and gave us
146 OKPHEUS 0. KERR PAPERS.
"During my short stcav in France, I belonged to a
convent of Carthusian monks, and there became ac-
quainted with the man whose confession constitutes
mj story. He had applied for admission to our order,
as one who had tired of life's gaieties, and bestowed
his wealth, which was enormous, npon the holy church.
Brother Dominique was the name he assumed ; and
his austere devotion speedily gained him notoriety for
great piety ; but there was something so unnatnral in
his actions, and, at times, so incoherent in his speech,
that we, who were his daily companions, involuntarily
shuddered when he spoke to us. Among the various
incongruities of his character, was a gloomy reserve —
or, rather, pride, which repulsed all advances of friend-
ship, and impressed upon the mind a conviction that
Brother Dominique's religion was more like that of a
hypocrite foiled in his schemes, than of a pure-minded
man, whose sense of duty to his Creator had induced
him to assume the serge and rosary. This conviction
was more than confirmed by his occasional exclama-
tions of anger and defiance, as though once more a
prey to the passions of an outer world; and, at the
expiration of a year from the time of his entrance, the
new brother was an object of suspicion, if not dislike,
to the whole convent, excepting myself
" My sentiments in regard to him were those of
pity ; for I felt confident that some great sorrow was
preying upon his mind ; and the wild agony which
would often contort his whole countenance, while at
SECOND SERIES. 147
evening prayers, made me anxions to know something
of his history.
" One evening, having received an order to visit the
cell of Dominique from our superior, I was surprised
to find a curiously-fasliioned lamp, burning in a niche,
directly opposite an iron cot, on which the monk was
sleeping. Knowing that the convent rules expressly
forbade a light at that hour, I was about to extinguish
it, when there fell upon my startled ear a loud yell,
like that of a springing tiger, and, in an instant, I was
seized by the throat. Filled with dismay, I struggled
to extricate myself, when the beams of the lamp fell
upon the writhing features of Dominique, pallid as
those of a corpse, and spattered with froth from his
"'Devil, I defy thee!' he exclaimed, dashing me
violently against the wall ; and then quitting his hold.
"'Brother Dominique, are you mad?' I asked, as
soon as I could recover my breath.
" ' It is a lie ! I am not mad !' he ejaculated, glaring
fiercely upon me, and biting his lip until the blood
streamed from his beard.
" Hardly knowing what I did, I again approached
the lamp ; when he again sprang to my side, and
pushed me violently from before it.
" ' Must I kill you, too V he said, in a whisper that
" 'You are excited,' I replied, with all the calmness
I could muster. ' I thought you were asleep, or I
should first have spoken to you about your lamp, the
burning of which, at this late hour, is a violation of
148 ORPHETJS C. KEBR PAPERS.
" He covered his face with his hands while I wa3
speaking ; and when he again looked up, all traces of
former ao^itation had vanished.
"'Forgive me, father,' he said, with composure.
* Our superior has granted me the privilege of having
a light always burning, as I am subject to fits, such as
3^ou have just witnessed, and cannot do without it.
God have mercy upon me ! I might have murdered
you,' he added, turning suddenly pale again, and lean-
ing against the damp wall.
*' I delivered my message, being anxious to leave a
being whose passions were so violent when aroused ;
but he called me back as I turned away, and resting
upon his hard bed, motioned for me to take a seat be-
'' I hesitated about complying at first ; but there
was an expression of mingled sorrow and entreaty
resting upon his whole countenance, that awoke my
sympathy and conquered fear. Closing the door of
the cell, I obeyed him in silence, and sat down with a
feeling of awe not to be defined.
" ' Father,' he said, laying one hand on each of my
shoulders, and staring fixedly in my face, ' Will you
hear me confess V
The extreme abruptness of the question made me
start from him with a gesture of surprise, but I an-
" ' Will you hear a tale of crime from a criminal?'
he continued, pressing heavily upon me, ' a tale of
murder from a murderer !'
" I felt convinced that I had a maniac to deal with,
and remembering to have heard that any sign of tim-
8EC0KD SERIES. 149
iditjr but added fuel to the fires of insanity, I steadily
returned his stare, and responded as quietly as I
" * Brother Dominique, if your soul is burtliened
with crimes, why not confess to the superior who is
our father confessor V
" * No, no !' he exclaimed, frantically. * To you, or
"Fearful that, by refusing, I should again arouse
him to violence, I drew my cowl closely over my
head to guard against the damp air, and bade him tell
me his sorrows.
" He, at once, fell upon hh knees before me — nor
could I persuade him to assume any other attitude.
" ' Here on my knees,' he began, ' will I tell a tale
that shall freeze your blood, and make you turn from
me in scorn, or hati-ed. You will not betray me V
" I assured him I would not.
" " I am the last of a noble Florentine house, which
bears the names of sovereigns upon its registers. My
father was a cold, stern man, proud of his high de-
scent, and arrogant with those beneath him. My
mother was the daughter of a Yenetian noble, bright
and beautiful as a diamond, and insensible to all the
softer warmths of women as is that precious gem. I
was their only child, and all the love their hearts were
capable of feeling was bestowed upon me ; all my de-
sires were gratified ere expressed; obsequious menials
stood about my path eager to obey my slightest nod ;
velvet received my infant footsteps, and the atmo-
sphere around me was one of mellow music.
" * I grew up to manhood a pampered child of for-
150 ORPHEUS C. KERB PAPERS.
tune, liappy only in the midniglit orgie or early morn-
ing revel, and the most polished profligate of my
native city; yet my father regarded me with feelings
of pride, and my mother looked upon her son as one
well worthy to inherit the flaunting fortunes of his
house. Although my father was ever kind to me he
was suhject to occasional fits of violence, when he
would beat the servants, and render it necessary for
his friends to confine him. It was said that he had
seized a gipsey woman who had been caught in the
act of stealing, causing her to be burned alive, and
that while the flames were torturing the poor wretch,
she had denounced her executioner with the bitterest
execrations, and declared that he and his ofi'spring
should feel the curse of madness. The prophecy so
worked upon my father's mind as to occasion periodi-
cal attacks of insanity, at which seasons he would
rave fearfully, and, as I said before, render temporary
confinement necessary. I cannot say that the know-
ledge of this fact had any eftect upon me then, for I
was gay and thoughtless ; but, alas ! it has since
proved my bane, and poisoned every cup that has
touched my lips.
" 'Onward I flew, in a whirl of wildest dissipation,
until my twenty-first birth day, when my father or-
dered me to meet him in the library at a certain hour.
Not daring to disobey him, although I anticipated
some cutting rebuke for my late headlong course, I
waited upon him at the appointed time, and was
relieved when he asked me in a kind tone to take a
seat near him.
" ' Dominique," he said, " you have now reached
SECOND SERIES. 151
an age when you must give up childisli follies, and be
a man. You are my only son, and my titles and for-
tune must one day be yours. It is my hope that you
may support them with honor ; but, in order to do
this you must take a decided step at once — you must
" * Although arrived at that period of life when
women usually becomes the principal object of man'8
hope and ambition, I was totally indifferent to them,
and ridiculed those of my friends who had married,
or, as I termed it, become slaves for life. But I knew
my father's temper too well to thwart him, and ap-
peared to acquiesce in his designs for my future ben-
efit. He informed me that the lady whom he had
selected to be my bride, was of a noble family, and
would be at our villa in a few days, when he wished
me to render myself as agreeable as possible, and
at once commence ray wooing.
" ' I left him with a feeling of despair at being so
soon obliged to give up my gay companions and
become suppliant to one whom I had never before
seen, and belonging to a sex that I held in con-
" ' In my trouble I appealed to a young nobleman,
an associate of mine, for advice, and he recommended
that I should go abroad without my father's know-
ledge — afterwards giving him my reasons for so doing
in a letter, and humblv askino- his foro-iveness. This
advice just suited my disposition, and I resolved to
follow it. Accordingly I collected suflScient funds for
my journey, and on the morning of the day when my
152 OEPHEUS C. KERB PAPERS.
intended bride was to arrive at our villa, I started
with my valet for France.
^' ' Upon reaching Paris I wrote to my father, de-
clarino- my determination to remain unmarried until
tired of being my own master, and concluding by
asking his pardon for the step which I had taken. My
father did not answer this letter, and hence I supposed
that he was seriously offended ; but this conviction
did not prey upon my mind for any length of time —
indeed, I soon became more notorious in the French
capital than I had been at home for unbounded extra-
vagance and heedless dissipation. The well-known
prominence and w^ealth of my family gained access
for me to the circles of the most exclusive aristocracy.
The glory and powder of the unfortunate Louis and his
peerless queen, Marie Antoinette, were already on
the wane ; yet their magniticence far eclipsed that of
any other European court, and many traitors stood in
the o-littering throng that swarmed about them, whose
meekly down-cast eyes were destined to blaze with
the fires of rebellion, and whose swords ^vere yet
to flash terror into the heart of that sovereign who
regarded them then as the staunchest bulwarks of his
throne. AVith all due ceremony, I was presented to
the ill-fated representatives of royalty, and quickly
found myself the cynosure of all eyes, leered at by
languishing dames, sneered at by those of my own sex
whom nature had slighted, and honored with the
attention of more than one aristocrat who afterwards
fell a victim to the fury of red republicanism. But
the sword of Damocles was suspended over our
heads, and it soon fell with a clash that aroused
SECOND SERIES. 153
echoes ia every corner of the globe. When first
the ferocious Club proclaimed its prerogative, I
joined with others in treating it as a subject beneath
our notice ; but, as the flames of insurrection spread,
and street barricades were successfully defended
against the assaults of the National Guard, I began to
feel the danger of being an aristocrat, and take meas-
ures for flight when events should have reached their
crisis. It was too late. At the dead of night, I was
aroused from my sleep by a violent uproar in the
street below, accompanied by a tliundering at the
court yard gates of my hotel. I sprang from my couch
to the window, and, with a vague apprehension of
what was to come, pulled aside the curtain and looked
forth. Holy Virgin ! what a sight was there ! —
Thousands of howling demons, fast losing all sem-
blance of humanity, surging and roaring like an infer-
nal sea, with ghastly death-lights leaping above its
waves and drowning grim shadows beneath. ' Blood !
blood !' was their watchword, and I heard my name
bandied from lip to lip, with bitter execrations. My
pride was aroused, and conquered every other emo-
tion. Hastily drawing a heavy military cloak over
my head and form, I opened the casement, and walked
out upon the balcony. So completely did my gar-
ment shroud me, that the bloodhounds knew me not,
and for a moment their hellish cries sank into dead
" * " Open the gates, or we will burn you alive,"
shouted a hoarse voice.
" ' '' Vive le lioi P^ I shouted in answer.
" ' " Oh, what rage there was in the yell responsive
154: ORPHEUS C. KERR PAPERS.
to my taunt. It seemed as though Pandemonium had
sent its countless fiends to join in the chorus of brutal
fury. The gates were fast yielding, and my servants
were constantly reminding me with pallid faces that
I was rutlilessly sacrificing their liv^es for my own. In
a moment, my resolution was made. I hastily assum-
ed my usual dress, and wrapping the cloak about me,
went down into the court and placed myself in a dark
" ' " Open the gates," I cried, disguising my voice,
and throwing it as far forward as possible.
" ' With quaking limbs, my servant obe^yed the or-
der, and in another moment, I felt the hot tide of
devils bolting past me, into the elegant saloons of my
hotel. So intent were the mob upon despoiling and
plundering, that I was enabled to gain the street un-
molested; but at that point, some enemy called my
name, and with a shout of triumph, hundreds of in-
furiate demons started toward me. Knowing that
resistance would be worse than madness, I drew my
sword, and clenching it firmly in my right hand, with
the point in front of me, I ran swiftly before them.
Again arose the shouts, and onward came my enemies,
panting for blood. Desperation gave me strength,
and like a hunted deer, I far out-sped my pusuers ;
but human nature cannot be taxed beyond a certain
point, and as I turned into the Hue St. Martin, my
strength began to fail me, and my breath came hot
and quick. Giving up all hope of escape and re-
solving to sell my life dearly, I was about to stand at
bay, when an open door in a house close by caught
my glance, and with the rapidity of thought, I darted
SECOND SERIES. 165
throiigli and closed it behind me. My hunters had
not yet turned the corner, but I could hear their cries
and with regained strength, I ascended a flight of
stairs and entered an apartment, when a scream of
surprise arrested my progress. A young girl stood
before me with uplifted hands and astonishment
painted upon every feature.
"''*Holy Mother! What would you have, mon-
'" " I am pursued by the canaille^ mademoiselle,
and entered here to recruit my strength. I will die
like a man."
^' ' '- You are a royalist ?"
" ' " Yes."
'' * I turned to the door, when slie eyed me closely
for some moments, and then opening a closet in the
wall, pointed to its interior, without speaking. I saw
at once that she wished to save me, and after raising
her liands to my lips in mute expression of my grati-
tude, I entered the closet, and heard her turn the key
in the lock. Almost at the same moment, loud shouts
arose from the street and heavy footsteps were heard
ascending the stairs.
u t u Whose house is this ?'' demanded a gruff voice,
as its owner apparently entered the room, in company
^' *" Citizen Foliere's," answered my protectress, in
sweet, calm tones.
'^'" Which side?"
'' ' " Vive la EepitUiqice:'
" t '(• Tres hien. He can't be here, comrades ; he has
156 OKPHEUS C. KEKR PAPEKS.
given us the slip. Where is your father, mad-
" ' " He went to join in the attack on a hotel in the
Kne St. Honore."
" ' "Then he will be back soon, for the building is
in flames, though its master has escaped us. Adieu,
" •• My nerves and muscles had been drawn to the
last degree of tension, excitement had buoyed me up
for a time ; but now tliat my pursuers were departing
and danger no longer surrounded me, a reaction took
place, and I fell insensible upon the floor of ray closet,
while my fair jailer was in the act of liberating me.
" ' Soon a scorching heat fell upon my brain, and
in fancy I returned to my father's house. Dire shapes
of blood haunted me, until I raved like a maniac and
cursed the author of my being as the author of my
" 'I woke as from a dream, and found myself lying
upon a soft couch, attended by a physician, and a tall,
middle-aged man, wearing the red republican badge
— I owed my life to one of a class which I had ever
despised. Monsieur Foliere had returned home soon
after my pursuers had quitted it ; and found his
daughter attempting to revive me ; great as was the
risk he incurred by protecting a royalist, he did not
hesitate to send at once for a surgeon, and order every
comfort necessary to preserve my life.
" * I endeavored to express my gratitude ; but the
stern citizen frowned, and from that time forth, I said
no more on the subject. Health slowly returned to
its temple, and as it sent the warm blood tingling
SECOND SERIES. 157
freshly throngh my veins, love mingled with the cur-
rent that flowed to the heart. Cerise, my saviour,
my guardian angel, hovered about my pillow like a
spirit of light, awaking in my breast a passion which
had never dwelt there before. She was not what the
world termed a beauty ; but there was a quiet grace
about her actions, and a smiling, lovely dignity ever
shining from her large brown eyes, that so drew her
to me, as to make me silent and melancholy when she
was iijot present.
" ' Kot to linger over a period, the purest and
brightest of my existence, sufiice it to say, that Cerise
returned my passion, and I was blest with her love.
I told her my name, and painted the splendors of
Florence, wdiile she listened with a gentle smile of ap-
probation, and consented to become my wife, should
her father raise no objection.
"'Anticipating no difficulty in that quarter, my
happiness was unalloyed, and I considered her as all
my own. At length, when my health was fully re-
established, I asked a private interview with Citizen
Foliere, and demanded the hand of his daughter in
marriage. I described in glowing terms my love for
Cerise and her reciprocation — I spoke of my high rank
in Florence, the many honors of my family, and its
great antiquity ; the advantages which would accrue
to him from having such a son-in-law — in fact, pre-
sented my views in every light of interest and pater-
nal affection that I could devise. The stern republic
can heard me throngh in silence, and then answered
" ' "Young man, you were received into my house,
158 ORPHEUS C- KERR PAPERS.
a fugitive from retributive justice, and sheltered by
me at the risk of my own good name and life. I
pitied your youth, and yielded my protection, when
duty bade me surrender you to my friends. Would
you repay me by robbing me of my richest treasure,
or forever blighting her existence by arousing in her
bosom a hopeless passion? My daughter cannot be
yours, though you boasted the blood of a sovereign;
she shall never sit in the palaces of our oppressors.
My decision is irrevocable, and this subject must be
forever at rest."
"' Frantic with indignation and disappointment, I
flew to Cerise, and with the violence of a maniac, ac'
quainted her with my ill-success ; I swore she should
be mine, or I would slay myself at her feet. By turns
she wept and expostulated, until I accused her of
faithlessness, when she threw herself into my arms,
and in an agony of tears, bade me do with her as I
"'That night I was on my way from Paris, with
my wife clasped to my breast, calling down heaven's
bitterest curses upon my head, should I ever cease to
love her as I then did, and kissing the hot tears from
her cheeks in a burning, maddening transport of blind
" ' Oh madman ! wretch that I was — why did I not
fall a withered corpse at the feet of that innocent girl,
who sacrificed a father's love for me ?
" ' At Genoa I purchased a villa in a retired spot,
and there tasted the intoxicating joys of elysium ; but
fate was darkening in clouds above my head, and the
bridal garlands were soon to blossom in a harvest of
SECOND SERIES. 159
blood. I wrote again to my father, acquainting liim
with the step I had taken, and narrating my escape
from death in France. An answer soon came, and in
the presence of my wife I read as follows :
" ' ^' Dominique — Foolish boy, you have well nigh
driven me to madness by your conduct, and your
mother has gone to the grave a victim to the folly of
her son. Come hither at once, if you would not kill
me also, and behold the wreck that remains of
" ' " Your Father."
" ' The vague tone of this communication, and the
intelligence of my mother's death, overwhelmed me
with sorrow. Cerise, dear Cerise, fell upon my
bosom and reproached herself as being the author of
all my troubles. In vain did I try to forget my own
griefs, and strive to console her ; she soon became
calm, but the smile of contentment no longer beamed
from her eyes, and her peace was departed forever.
She insisted upon obedience to my fixther's request,
and when I yielded, accompanied me to my native
city silent and tearless.
" ' Kesolving to see my father alone, I left my wife
at an obscure house in the suburbs of the city, and
promising to return when I had softened my parent's
wrath, I set out with a heavy heart for the home of
" ' The servants at once recognized me, but I could
only learn it from their glances, for they led the way
in silence to the saloon of reception.
" • My father was seated in a remote corner, con-
IGO ORPHEUS C. KERR PAPEES.
versing with some person when I entered, and on be-
holding me, at once came forward and embraced me
with every token of affection. Astounded at receiving
such a salute, when I expected nothing but reproach,
I stood motionless, staring at him in silence, until the
other person present approached. Xever shall I forget
the appearance of Lucia on that day. Her raven
locks, falling below her waist and mingling imper-
ceptibly with the folds of her sable robe, contrasted
strikingly with the snow-white purity of her complex-
ion, over which her piercing eyes, shed a lustre truly
spiritual. As my father introduced us, our glances
met, and I felt a thrill to my inmost soul.
" ' It maddens me to dwell upon those scenes, and I
will hasten to the conclusion of my story. I forgot
Cerise, my honor — everything, in the society of her
who had once been selected to wed with me. Day
followed day until a month had elapsed, and I still re
mained fiiscinated to the spot, ialse to my vows, false
to my wife, and true to nothing but blind infatuation.
My father beheld me sinking deeper and deeper in
the black waves of infamy, and a light of demoniac ex-
ultation burned in his eyes. I marked his triumph,
and I, too, felt a savage joy, though for what reason, I
'' ' At length he taunted me as the husband of a
lazarone. He pointed with hellish glee to where Lucia
stood, the incarnation of perfection, and bade me
behold what I had lost. My brain was on fire, a
thousand furies tugged at my heartstrings, and as my
father clasped my hands in his and looked down into
my soul, I felt that savage joy again, and a demon
SECOND SERIES. 161
possessed me. My father approached liis face to
mine, until his hot breath burned upon my cheek, and
whispered in my ear; it was enough. With a loud
laugh I left him and flew, rather than ran, to where
my deserted wife was watching for me, sad and
"'Why did slie not tax me with my perfidy?
Why did not her angel soul arise in its innocent love,
to crush me with the glancing of an eye ? Oh, that
she had uttered one reproach, one bitter word ! She
saw me, and with a cry of joy, cast her white arms
about my neck, as on our marriage ; they were like
chains of searing, glowing iron to me, and I dashed
her from me, howling in the delirium of my torments.
She marked the wild fire that fiashed from my eye,
the dark flush that burned upon my cheek, my breast
heaving with the struggles of the fiend within, my
hair hanging in disordered masses over my throbing
brow, the cowardly trembling of the hand concealed
in my bosom ; she beheld a fiend incarnate in the
form of one who had sworn to love and cherish her
forever ; yet no word of reproach arose from those
lips I had so often kissed. Again her arms were about
me, and again I attempted to dash Iier to the ground.
u i a -^^y hn.sband, my dear Dominique !" she shriek-
ed, clinging to me, and pressing her cheeks, pallid
and cold, ao^ainst mine, orlowino: and burnino^ with the
reflected fires of hell. The spell of madness fell upon
me, as I struggled with that faithful wife, and hissing
froth boiled from between my teeth, mingling with
her long locks of auburn hair. I sufiered all the tor-'
ments of the damned as we swayed to and fro, until
162 OErHEUS C. KEER PAPERS.
lier strength began to fail and her arms relaxed their
hold. Then, ^^ith a horrid langh, I wound her long
curls about my hand, and plunged a stiletto to its hilt
in her breast.
" ' The warm blood of life poured in a torrent upon
me, and as my victim lay gasping upon the ground, I
danced frantically about her, laughing with glee.
*' * I did not wait to see her die — 1 dared not do it
— but all gory as I was, I returned to my father. He
met me with a smile, and his calmness communicated
itself to me.
" ' I was happy then — oh I yes, very happy !
*' ' With blood upon my hand, and madness in my
brain, I wooed Lucia with all the cunning of insanity,
and another gentle heart soon beat for me alone.
" ' We were married ! I remember the bright glare
of the lights, the holy dignity of the priests, the gay
laughter of the brilliant company, as my health and
haiypiness were pledged in goblets of rare wines, the
face of my second wife shining like that of an angel,
with fond, confiding love for me ; and then my father !
We looked at each other, and smiled exultantly — we
murderers, madmen, receiving the homage of rea-
sonable beings. I was filled with mad joy, and sent
forth peals upon peals of laughter while the ceremony
was being performed. My father joined in my unna-
tural merriment, and surprise and fear was painted on
every countenance. I saw the lips of Lucia tremble,
and squeezed her hand so that she groaned with pain.
Oh ! what would I not have given to have be*en in the
open air, yelling my triumph to the beast in his lair
and the bird on the wing ; making nature's arena to
SECOND SERIES. 163
echo my bursts of mirth, and rising fiir above the
earth on a sea of discord. My father continued near
me through the ceremony, and left the saloon at its
conclusion ; but I knew that his feelings were like
mine and envied his liberty. '
" * Then I grew cahn again, and friends congratu-
lated me, and music filled the air, and the dance went
on, and I kissed my bride until she involuntarily shrank
from me in confusion. I was very happy then.
"'At length the midniglit hour arrived and the
maidens of Lucia conducted her, veiled in blushes, to
tjie nuptial couch. How beautiful did she look, ar-
rayed in spotless white, such as bright angels wear.
An hour elapsed ere I flew to her chamber and threw
myself upon the floor in a paroxysm of mirth. There
was a large lamp of glass that burned before a mirror
in our bridal chamber, and as its perfumed oil was
consumed a delicious odor ladened the air ; as I
rolled upon the carpet and tore it with my teeth, the
light shone in my eyes, and in an instant I ceased all
motion and stared fixedly at it, while cold drops of
water came out upon my temple.
" ' Timidly my bride approached and spoke to me ;
but I answered her not ; for there was another form be-
fore my eyes ; another bride speaking to my soul.
There was an explosion ; the lamp fell into a thousand
pieces, and where it had been there stood my murdered
wife^ with the blo':)d pouring from her bosom, and the
stilletto in her hand. I saw her as plainly as I now
see you, and she bade me slay her rival ! I knew my
fate decreed it so ; I dared not disobey the dead, and
with a howl of fury, I sprang upon Lucia, my second
164: ORPHEUS C. KERR PAPERS.
bride. In vain she clasped her hands to me in prayer
for mercy ; in vain she tried to shriek for help ; I
grasped her pale throat until my nails sank into the
flesh, and a purple hue spread over her face. There
I saw her sink from blooming health to ghastly death,
and every feature was visible to me in all its convul-
sive workings, although the light was out.
" 'M}^ spirit wife stood before me and my last vic-
tim, until she faded to nothing in the morning light.
" ' As the beams of the sun streamed in upon me, I
took my dead bride in my arms and stalked gaily
down to the saloon of my father. I heard him laugh-
ing loudly, and with a laugh I answered him as I
carried my burden into his presence. He, too, had
something in his arms, and it was the lifeless form of
Cerise, crumbling to decay, and fresh from a banquet
of worms. "We placed our treasures side by side upon
a table, and embraced each other with yells of laugh-
ter. Higher and higher rose our mirth, and louder
grew our shouts of triumph, until the street beneath
us was crowded with people, and the servants burst
into the saloon where we held our revel.
" ' A7e were seized and carried before the Duke,
with the cold corpses of my wives ; but we laughed
when they called us murderers, and cursed when
others called us madmen. * * * -k-
" 'The keepers of the madhouse awoke me from my
slumbers to tell me that ray father had died during
the night. What was that to me ? I wanted a light
burning beside me all night, and then he would not
come from the grave to visit me. So I laughed and
,was merry to think that I was locked up in a mad-
TECOND SEKIES. 165
house. After many years I was released from my
prison, and came thither to take the cowl of a monk.
Think not that I am mad, holy father, when I sol-
emnly swear that the shades of my v;ives stand beside
me every night, and only wait until the light goes
out, to drag me down to hell. I see them now, with
bleeding bosom, and throat bearing the prints of my
nails ! Cerise ! Lucia ! I defy thee both ! The lamp
still burns ! ha ! ha ! ha !'
" With a horrid laugh brother Dominique fell upon
his face on the ground, like one blasted by a stroke
from heaven ; and with a vague feeling of terror, I
crawled stealthily to my own cell.
*' On the following day we met at morning prayer,
in the chapel, but he treated me as though we had
never known each other, and the events of the preced-
ing night were never again mentioned by either of us.
" One evening, loud peals of laughter were heard
issuing from the cell of the maniac, and several of the
monks hastened thither with me, to learn its cause.
On opening the door, I first beheld the lamp lying
extinguished in its niche, while brother Dominique
was stretched upon the stony pavement in strong con-
vulsions, giving vent ever}^ now and then to sounds of
mirth, so dreadful that we stopped our ears, and fled
horrified to the superior. When all was again silent
we returned to the cell ; but the maniac was not there,
and the niche was vacant."
Such, my boy, was the story related by M. Bonbon,
the reading making him hoarse, and the plot suggest-
ing a nightmare also.
Orpheus C. Kerb.
KOTING THE REMARKABLE RETROGRADE ADVANCE OF THE MACK-
EREL BRIGADE UPON WASHINGTON, AND THE UNSEEMLY RAIDS
OF THE RECKLESS CONFEDERACY.
TVashixgton, D. C, August SOth, 1862.
As every thing continues to indicate, my boy, that
President Lincohi is an honest man, I am still of the
opinion that the restoration of the Union is only a
question of time, and ^vill be accomplished some
weeks previous to the commencement of the Millen-
nium. It is the *' Union as it was" that we want, my
boy, and those who have other articles to sell are
hereby accused of being accursed Abolitionists. I
was talking the other day to a venerable Congress-
man from Maryland, who had just arrived to protest
against the disturbance of mail facilities between Bal-
timore and the capital of the Southern Confederacy,
and says he, "I have several friends who are Confe-
deracies, and they inform me that they are perfectly
willinor to return to the Union as it Was, in case they
should fail in their present enterprise. If I thought,"
says the Congressman, hastily placing a lottery-ticket
in his vest-pocket, " if I thought that this war was to
be waged for the purpose of injuring the Southern
Confederacy, rather than to restore the Union as it was,
SECOND SERIES. 167
I should at once demand more mileage of the Govern-
ment, and repeatedly inquire what had become of all
the ' Wide-A wakes.' "
As he uttered this last horrible threat, my boy, I
was impressed with a sense of something darkly dem-
ocratic. Too many of the " Wide-Awakes" of the last
campaign are indeed fiist asleep now, when their
country needs them, I saw one of them slumbering
near Culpepper Court House last week. He was
sleeping with his right arm twisted in the spokes of
a disabled cannon wheel, and a small purple mark
was on his right temple. But he w^as not alone in his
forgetful sloth, my boy; for near him, and rigidly
grasping his disengaged hand, was a Democrat slum-
bering too !
The sight, I remember, rendered me so honestly in-
dignant, that I could not help pointing it out to the
Mackerel Chaplain, who was engaged in selling hymn-
books to the wounded. The Chaplain looked a mo-
ment at the Fusion Ticket before us.
" They sleep for the Flag," says he, softly, " and
may its Stars shed pleasant dreams upon their loyal
souls for ever."
The Chaplain is an enthusiast, my boy, and this is
what he has written about
OUR GUIDINa STARS.
The planets of our Flag are set
In God's eternal blue sublime,
Creation's world-wide starry stripe
Between the banner'd days of time.
168 OKPHEUS C. KERR PAPERS.
Upon the sky's divining scroll,
In burning punctuation borne,
They shape the sentence of the night
That prophesies a cloudless morn.
The waters free their mirrors are ;
And fair with equal light they look
Upon the royal ocean's breast,
And on the humble mountain brook.
Though each distinctive as the soul
Of some new world not yet begun,
In bright career their courses blend
Round Liberty's unchanging Sun.
Thus ever shine, ye Stars, for all I
And palsied be the hand that harms
Earth's pleading signal to the skies,
And Heav'ns immortal Coat of Arms.
Yon are probably aware, my boy, that the uncon-
querable Mackerel Brigade is still advancing upon
^Yasbington in a highly respectable and strategic
manner; and that all correspondents are excluded
from the lines, lest some of them, in their natural
blackness of heart, should construe the advance upon
Washington into a retreat from Kichmond.
But 1 gained admission to the scene by adopting
the airy and pleasing uniform of the Southern Confe-
deracy; and am thereby enabled to give you some
further account of the skillful retrogade advance to
which I dimly referred in my absorbing last.
SECOND SERIES. 169
The uniform of the Southern Confederacy is much
respected by many of our officers, my boy, and is the
only guise in which a fellow being may scrutinize the
national strategic works with entire safety.
Thus attired, I joined the Mackerel Brigade in its
cheerful work of pushing j^ichmond away from its
martial front, and having penetrated to the rear where
horrible carnage was being wrought in the frantic
ranks of the Confederacy, I beheld the idolized Gen-
ral of the Mackerel Brigade anxiously searching for
something upon the ground. In a moment, he looked
up, and says he to the warriors in his neighborhood:
" My children, have you seen anything of a small
black bottle that I placed upon the grass, just now,
when I turned to speak to my aid?"
A Mackerel chap coughed respectfully, and says he :
'^ I guess it was taken b}'' some equestrian Confedera-
cies, which has just made another raid."
"Thunder!" says the General, "that's the third
bottle I've lost in the same way within an hour." And
he proceeded slowly and thoughtfullj^ to mount his
horse, which stood eyeing him with funereal solemnity
and many inequalities of surface.
Turning to another part of the line, my boy, I be-
held Captain Yilliam Brown and Captain Bob Shorty
in the act of performing a great strategic movement
with the indomitable Conic Section, many of whom
were employing the moment to take a last look at the
canteens presented to them before leaving home by
their devoted mothers. A number of reckless Con-
federacies had just crossed a bridge spanning a small
stream near by, and the object of this daring move-
170 ORPHEUS C. KEKR PAPERS.
ment was to suddenly destroy the bridge before they
could retreat and then make prisoners of the whole.
It was a sublime conception, my boy — it was a sub-
lime conception, and rich with strategy.
Like panthers surrounding their unsuspecting prey,
the wily Mackerels swept noiselessly across the bridge,
applied their axes with the quickness of thought, and
in a moment the doomed structure fell splashing into
the water. It was beautiful to see Yilliam's honest
exultation at this moment ; his eyes brightened like
small bottles of brandy with the light shining through
them, and says he :
'•We have circumvented the Confederacy. Ah!"
says Yilliam, proudly ; "the United States of Ame-
rica is now prepared to continue in the exchange bu-
siness, and — "
He paused. He paused, my boy, because he sud-
denly observed that Captain Bob Shorty had com-
menced to scratch his head in a dismal manner.
"I'm blessed," says Captain Bob Shorty, in a cho-
lerical manner — 'Tni blessed if I don't think there's
some mistake heic, my militay infant !'
" Ha !" says Yilliam, with dignity ; " do you disco-
ver a flaw in the great chain woven by the United
States of America av-und the doomed Confederacy ?"
Capiain Bob Shorty agahi scratched his head, and
says he :
"I don't wish to make unpleasant insinuations; but
it seems to me that this here body of infantry has left
itself on the wrong side of the stream !"
And so it had, my boy. By one of those little mis-
takes wliich will sometimes occur in the most victor-
SECOND SERIES. 171
ions armies, the Conic Section had thoughtlessly
crossed the bridge before destroying it, thus leaving
themselves on one side of the river, while the riotous
Confederacies were on the other.
How they got across again, at a fordable place
higher up, just in time to see the Confederacies cross
again, at a fordable place lower down, I will not pause
to tell you, as such information might retard enlist-
Once more stationing myself near.the General of the
Mackerel Brigade, who sat astride his funereal charger
like the equestrian statue of the Duke of Wellington,
I was watching his motions attentively, when a body
of horsemen suddenly dashed by him, and I saw, as
they disappeared, that he was left bareheaded.
" Thunder !" says the general, winking very vio-
lently in the sunlight, and rattling his sword in a fear-
less manner, '' where's my cap gone to ?"
There was a respectful Mackerel chap at hand, and
says he :
" I think it was took by the equestrian Confederacy,
which has jest made another raid."
" Hum !" says the general, thoughtfully, " that's
very true. Thunder !" says the general to himself, as
it were : " this is all Greeley's work. "
Pondering deeply over this last remark, I sauntered
to another part of the field, where the Orange County
Howitzers were being prepared to repel the charge of
a regiment of Confederacies, who had just come within
our lines for the purpose. The artillery was well
handled, my boy, and not a piece would have been
captured but foi* the splendid discipline of the gun-
172 ORPHEUS C. KERU PAPERS.
ners. Thej were too well disciplined to dispute or-
ders, my boy ; and as Captain Samjule Sa-mith had
accidentally forgotten to give the order to *' load"
before he told them to fire, the effect of our metal
upon the hostile force was not as inflammatory as it
might have been.
The next I saw of Samyule, he was making his re-
port to the general, who received hiin with much en-
*' Where are ygur guns, my child ?" says the gene-
neral, with paternal affability.
Samyule blew his nose in a business-like manner,
and says he ;
'' Several of them have just gone South."
I am unable to state what response the general in-
tended to make, my boy ; for at this instant a body of
horsemen swept between the speakers, one of the
riders jerking the veteran's horse violently from under
him, and galloping the steed away with him. Up
sprang the general, in a violent perspiration, and says
"Where's my horse gone to ?"
" I guess," says a Mackerel chap, stepping up — " I
guess that it was took by the equestrian Confederacy,
which has just made another raid."
" Thunder !" says the general, '* they'll take my
coat and vest next." And he retired to a spot nearer
I would gladly continue my narrative of the ad-
vance movement, my boy, showing how our forces
continued their marcli in excellent order, safely reach-
ing a spot within ten miles of the place they gained
SECOND SERIES. 173
on tlie following day ; but such revelations would
simply tend to contuse your weak mind with those
great doubts concerning military affairs which tend to
render civilization impertinently critical.
It is the simple duty of civilians, my boy, to im-
plicitly trust our brass-buttoned generals ; of whom
there are enough to furnish the whole world with war
— and never finish it at that.
Oepheus C. Kerb.
IN WHICH OUR CO RESPONDENT ASTONISHES US BY ENGAGING IN
SINGLE COMBAT WITH M. MICHELET, AND DEMOLISHING
" l'aMOUR" and *' LA FE-MME."
Washington, D. C, Sept. 4th, 1862.
While I was lounging in a banker's drawing-room
this morning, my boy, waiting for the filthy lucre
chap to come down and say that he was glad to see
me, I chanced to see the eternal *'L'Amour" and
" La Femme" lying upon a table in the apartment.
The sight threw me into a bad humor, for I detest
those books, my boy, and wish the United States of
America had never seen them.
Monsieur Michelet, a French individual of question-
able morals, first writes a book about "Love," and
then clinches it with one about " Woman." It is
hardly necessary to add, that he treats both subjects
in a thoroughly French manner, and makes one a con-
tinuation of the other. Love is a charming little story
in every man's life, " complete in one number " — •
Number one. Woman is a love-story, " to be con-
tinued" until, like all other continued stories, it ends
with marriage !
Such is the logic implied by Monsieur Michelet's
two books, and whether it is calculated to elevate or
degrade the weaker sex, a majority of educated
SECOND SERIES. 175
American women have eagerly read the books and
accepted the sentiments as so many compliments.
And the men ? They leisurely rove through the
leaves of monsieur's mental Yalambrosa, and say :
" How Frenchy !" And in that natural exclamation
we find the most complete and just criticism of
" L' Amour " and '' La Femme " possible to American
lips or pen.
This Michelet, my boy, is a man of talent and re-
markably clear poetical perception. He is as much
like Hallam as a Frenchman can be like an English-
man, and France honors him for his development of
the poetrN^ of her history ; but is that any reason why
he should be accepted as the modern High-priest of
Love and the Censor of Woman ? By no means.
Madame de Stael was thinking of a Frenchman when
she wrote: ** Love is only an episode in man's life " —
and may have referred to herself when she added :
" but it is woman's whole existence." Had an Ameri-
can woman spoken this, we should suspect the senti-
ment to be nothing more than the reproach of a dis-
appointed passion ; but of the Frenchman it is indis-
putably true, as well as of woman wherever we find
The French do not know what Fidelity means, my
boy ; they have chameleon souls, and remain true to
one object only until another comes within their reach.
Like mad bulls, they are attracted by the quiescent
warmth of fiery-red ; and, having attained it, tear it
to pieces in their passion.
"What can such people know about Love ? Nothing.
They call Love " L' Amour," and when we speak of a
176 OEHPEUS C. KEER PAPERS.
man's " amours," we mean tliat he " loves " like a
Frenchman. Monsieur Michelet is a Frenchman;
and supposing him to be an ordinary one, we must
accept his sentiments regarding Woman as we would
tliose of an Apicius regarding a delicacy he apostro-
phizes before devouring. But Michelet's temperament
is poetical, and while he looks upon Woman as a fore-
taste of the sensualist's paradise, and upon Love as the
means of gaining it, he covers up the grossness of his
ideas with robes borrowed from the angels. Adopt-
ing Kepler's canon, that " harmony is the perfection
of relations," he makes "Woman, the creature, a con-
tinuation of Love, the sentiment ; and the tenor of his
"L' Amour" and ''La Femme" is, that both must be
possessed by man, in order to perfect the nnion which
makes them a perfect One. .,
Wherever I go I tind these books: cheek to cheek
they repose on the carved table of the lady's boudoir ;
shoulder to shoulder tlv^j stand on the library slielf ;
tete-a-tete they give the rich centre-table an equivocal
aspect. Young men and maidens, old men and
matrons, children and chambermaids read them ; yet
they have no social effect. Woman understands love
and herself; Man thinks he understands both; and
the fictitious fervor of Monsieur Michelet has no more
effect upon either than so much prismatic froth. It
addresses itself piquantly to the eye, and murmurs
like a shell in the ear ; but once out of sight and hear-
ing, and it is only an excuse for light talk and laxity
I am glad to record this ; it shows that our national
morality is in no danger of being wrecked on the
SECOND SERIES. 177
French coast by any such tropical gales as Michelet,
Fejdeau, or Dumas can blow. Let our publishers
bring over a few more cargoes from the Augsean
stables of French literature in English bottoms, and I
will guarantee them large profits. We will read them,
and immediately forget all about it.
But to return to Michelet again. Our women read
his " Woman," and imagine that it compliments their
sex — flatters them. Fortunate is it, that flattery very
seldom changes a woman's character, though it may
sway her judgment. She accepts it as her right, but
seldom believes it. Queen Elizabeth graciously ex-
tended her hand to be kissed when her noble lover
compared her to " the sun, whose faintest ray extin-
guishes the brightest planet ;" yet that same hand
had signed the flatterer's death-warrant. At the mo-
ment she was pleased, and her good sense dazed ; but
her heart was not reached. Flattery, skillfully ad-
ministered, may add fuel to a woman's love ; but
the fire must first be kindled with something more
sympathetic. An American woman may read " La
Femme," and complacently receive its subtle equiv-
oques as so much fuel added to her vanity ; but that
vanity was kindled into existence in the first place by
the genuine homage of some honest man.
It was Michelet's "Woman," my boy, that sug-
gested this letter ; jQt I did not intend, at the outset,
to devote so much space to his unwholesome sophis-
try. If I have shown, however, that Michelet's ''Wo-
man " is only such a being as he would have created
Tinder that name, could he have changed places with
the Deity, I have not wasted time and ink. Thank
178 OKPHEUS C. KERR PAPERS.
fortune, there is but one French deity, and his proper
name commences with a D.
Now, let me give my own idea of Woman — not
" La Femme."
As she stands before me in the light of ]S"ature, she
is no " enigma," as voluutarily-puzzled poets have
called her; but a being easily defined, and not more
nearly related to the angels than man. To the best
of her sex we attribute one natural weakness and one
virtue— Curiosity and Modesty. Everybody must
allow this much. But why should we make such a
distinction between these two qualities ? Let us trace
them back to their exemplar :
Eve's curiosity was the first effect of her serpentine
temptation. Was it not ? Well, that curiosity caused
her to eat the forbidden fruit. Having eaten it, and
caused Adam to eat, she suddenly became possessed
of modesty, and made herself an apron of fig-leaves.
It is but natural to infer that her first hlush was worn
at the same time, though Milton attributes blushes to
the angels. As angels are immaterial beings, I think
Milton was mistaken. Xow, if modesty, as well as
curiosity, was the result of Satanic temptation, Avhy
should one be called a weakness and the other a vir-
tue ? Are not both the fruits of original sin ?
Woman's love is said to be stronger and more last-
inor than man's. Is it so ? Let us trace it back to its
Eve's love for Adam did not prevent her fall. She
met the Prince of Darkness and listened to his blan-
dishments, as too many ladies of the present time
prefer the society of bogus courtiers to that of their
SECOND SEEIK8. 179
Adair»8 of husbands. She forever disojraced Adam,
herself, and lier future family, just to please the
tempter. Was this a proof the depth jind vitality of
Woman's love ? And Adam ? Why, rather than refuse
any request of the woman he loved, however extra-
vai^ant, he voluntarily shared in her ruin, and courted
the curse of her fall. Did this prove that Man's love
is weaker and shorter-lived than Woman's?
N^ow, I should like to see some one impudent enough
to assert that Eve was more curious, or less modest,
or more fickle than are the best of her female descen-
dants. Such impudence is not compatible with the
present position of civilization. Then, as Eve was the
great exemplar of her sex in Modesty and Eidelity as
well as Curiosity, it follows that AVoman's Modesty is
the result of inherited sin, and her Fidelity in Love
no greater than Man's.
Alas ! for the " angels" of the poets, my boy. Prove
that her Modesty and Love are anything but heavenly,
and what renuiins to make Woman angelic?
I could lionor, love, and might obey the Best of Her
Sex; but I shall never worship her. She is not a
Deity — only a Woman. I believe that God intends
each woman for a wife ; yet six marriages out of every
d()zen are unhappy ones. And what is the reason?
Simply this :
Before marringe, man generally accepts one of the
two poetical theories respecting Woman, lie either
suppose-; her to be an angel, purer and more elevated
in her nature than he in his; or gloats over her as a
delicate morsel ])repared for his special delectation
by tlie gods. In either case, he finds out his mistake
180 OKPHEtJS C. KERK PAPERS.
when it is too late to rectify it, and his disappointment
is but the refinement of disgust. He either discovers
that woman is onlj^ a human being, and very much
like himself by nature ; or that constant familiarity
with her brings her down to the level of a man in his
estimation. There is but one possibility of escape
from disappointment in either case ; tlie death of hus-
band or wife within a year of the wedding day !
Husbands and wives, have I spoken truly?
But there are exceptions to every rule. Some men
marry women for the sake of having homes of their
own ; others, for money; still others, because it is the
fashion. The man who marries for a comfortable
home often gets what lie desired, and is contented ;
the mercenary husband is likely to do and feel the
same ; the fashionable iiusband generally cuts his
throat. These exceptions do not break the I'ule.
It may be asked : Why do widowers so often marry
again, if they were so disappointed in their first
wives? My boy, you are no philosopher. How
many men have learned wisdom by experience ? Only
a few, and they are all dead. If a sailor is ship-
wrecked, and nearly killed on his first voy^ige, does
he forsake the sea forever after? If a man buys an
image supposed to be made of marble, and discovers
that it is plaster, does he never buy another image ?
Because you and your neighbors chance to buy a
barrel of bad eggs, are you satisfied that good ones
are not to be had?
An enthusiastic young man marries a girl whom he
supposes to be an '*' angel." A year passes, and he
mourns over his mistake. A few more roll away, and
SECOND SERIES. 181
she dies. Does the widower profit by his experience ?
No ! He says to hiinselt': " My late wife was not an
* angel;' but that sweet girl I saw yesterday certainly
is. She is entirely different from my late wife."
Well, he marries angel iSTo. 2. She proves to be Ko.
1 in a different dress.
A tropical young man is infatuated with the physi-
cal beauty of a girl, and marries her with the idea
that he \v'ill never weary of looking at lier. A year
passes, and he is heartily tired of her. She dies.
Does the widower profit by his experience ? ]N"o ! He
says to himself: " I was wearied of my late wife be-
cause her hair, eyes and complexion were the same as
mine. Physiologists say that opposites are necessary
to matrimonial bliss. There is Miss — , with her hair,
eyes and complexion, in direct antithesis with mine.
i am sure I should never weary of her !" He marries
her. And tires of her.
Do you see, my boy ?
And now to remedy this evil; Let us look upon
woman as she is. If an " angel " with golden hair,
snowy complexion, pearly teeth, heaven-blue eyes,
and no appetite, sounds better in poetry than a true
woman, with auburn hair, fair complexion, clean
teeth, and nice blue eyes, whj-, let the poets rant about
"angels." But poetry has nothing to do with so
practical an event as marriage, and its "angels" will
not do for wives. A man cannot be guilty of a more
absurd and unprovoked piece of injustice, than that
of persisting in believing his bride more of an angel
than human. He might as well go to a jeweller's,
and insist upon buying a pearl for a diamond, when
182 OEPHETTS C KERK PAPERS.
the certain result of such folly would be his denuncia-
tion of the pearl as a swindle, when time convinced
him of its real character. No true woman desires to
be looked upon as an "angel," nor to have her beauty-
valued as a joy imperishable.
It is very common for women to lament the indif-
ference of husbands who were the most attentive and
obedient of lovers. I have explained the cause of the
To secure happiness — or contentment, at least — in
the marriage state, we must regard woman as our
equal by nature, whatever superiority^ or inferiority she
may possess by virtue of her mental or social educa-
tion. We must not look up to her, nor dow?i upon
licr, but straight at her. We must not base our love
for her upon supposed angelic qualities. If we desire
to make her happy, and be happy ourselves, we must
recognize her human origin in common with our own,
and accept her physical inferiority as security for the
continuance of our own love in all its normal strength.
Of course there are grades in human nature. Some
natures are more refined than others, from the effects
of their surroundings and education. But the lover
should recognize no degree higher than his own when
he selects his mistress. Then, if hers proves higher
than his, after marriage, he is delighted ; if the same
as his, he is satisfied. But suppose it should prove
lower than his? Such a supposition is untenable in
a marriage of mutual affection. A superior nature
will never gravitate to an inferior one by the attrac-
tion of real love. There must be a natural sympathy ;
SECOND SEEIES. 183
and sympathy is the rock upon which all true love is
Love never yet blended incompatible natures in
marriage. Money often does — brute-insanity some-
You have probably concluded, by this time, my
bo}^, that my ideas of the true Woman and Monsieur
Michelet's views of "La Femme " are decidedly at
I have sufficient faith in the good sense of Woman
to believe that slie will give preference lo my doctrine.
If so, she will not translate " La Femme" as " Woman,"
but as "grisette," ''lorette," or " camelia lady." To
christen such a work " Woman," is to lay a snare for
the Best of Her Sex, and catch the Weakest in it. The
female who allows it to affect her may possibly make
"a neatly-shod grisette," but never a good wife.
It may be asked w^hy I have made '' Woman " the
subject of this letter, and w^hy I have adopted such a
Frenchy style ?
Simply because there is no subject less understood,
my boy, by the generality of young mankind ; and
because I deem it best to practice the doctrine of
similia similihics curantur (in style) while quarreling
with Monsieur Michelet.
Okpheus C. Kerk.
GIVING ASSURANCE OF THE UNMITIGATED SAFETY OF THE CAPITAL,
EXEMPLIFYING COLONEL WOBINSOn's DRAFTING EXPERIENCE, AND
NARRATING A GREAT METAPHYSICAL VICTORY.
"Washington, D. C, September 5th, 1862.
Everything is confident and buoyant here, my boy,
a sense that the President is an honest man, inspiring
confidence on every side, and surrounding the Gov-
ernment with well-known confidence men. The re-
peated safety of the Capital, indeed, has even inspired
the genius of JS'ew England, as illustrated by a
thoughtful Boston chap, with one of those enlarged
business ideas which will yet enable that section to
betrade the whole world. The thoughtful Boston
chap has read all the war-news, my boy, for the last
six months, and as he happens to be a moral manufac-
turer of burglar-proof safes, a happy pecuniary
thought struck him forcibly. After joining the church,
to make sure of his morality here, he came hither in
haste, opened an establishment, read the war-news once
more, and then issued the following enterprising
SECOND SERIES. 185
BUY THE CELEBRATED
WASHINGTON S A F E !
Everybody tlionglit it was the safe they'd read so
much about in the papers, my boy, and several hun-
dreds were sold.
There was another chap, named Burns, the inventor
of a Family and Military Gridiron, who noticed how
the thoughtful Boston chap was making money by the
advertising necessities of our distracted country. Hav-
ing been born in Connecticut at a very early age, ni}^
boy, he was not long in finding a way to make his
own eternal fortune, after the same meritorious man-
ner. So he at once repaired to a liquor shop, to make
sure that a majority of our staff-ofiicers would hear
him, and then, says he, in stentorian tones :
"My sympathies are all with the Southern Confed-
eracy, to whom 1 send the weekly journals of romance
on the day of publication. As to the Union,'' says
the Connecticut chap, hotly, " I have less confidence
in it than I have in my Patent Economical Family
and Military Gridiron.-'
He was immediately arrested for this seditious talk,
my boy, and all the reporters telegraplied an exciting
dispatch to the reliable morning journals :
" Exciting Affair — Arrest of an Influential Rebel !
— The celebrated Mr. Burns has been arrested for
publicly saying that he had more confidence in his
186 ORPHEUS C. KERR PAPERS.
well-known and ingenious patent Economical Family
and Military Gridiron than he had in the Union.
Upon hearing of his incarceration, the most sanguine
rebel sympathizers here admitted that the cause of the
South was lost forever."
The Connecticut chap remained in custody until he
had received four hundred orders for gridirons, from
private families and army-chaplains, and then he ex-
plained that the words he had used were uttered in
the heat of passion, and he was, of course, honorably
discharged from prison, to make way for a shameless,
aged miscreant just committed for two years' hard la-
bor, on suspicion of having discouraged enlistments
by asserting that, although he was too old to go to the
war himself, he intended to send a substitute.
Simultaneously, all the reporters telegraphed again
to the reliable morning journals :
" The Burns Affair Settled ! — Full Particulars of
the Gridiron ! — Mr. Burns, the celebrated inventor
of the famous Patent Gridiron, has been honorably
discharged by order of the Secretary of War. His
inimitalile Gridiron is destined to have an immense sale.
"It cooks a beafsteak in such a manner that the ap-
petite is fully satisfied from merely looking at it, and
the same steak will do for breakfast next morning.
This is a great saving. Persons having nothing to eafc
find this Gridiron a great comfort, and hence the pro-
priety of introducing it in the army."
The Gridirons are having a great sale, my boy, and
SECOND SERIES. 187
it is believed that the business interests of the country
are being rapidly improved by the war.
Knowing that the Mackerel Brigade was making
preparations to entrap the Soutliern Confederacy at
Molasses Junction, I ascended to the upper gallery of
my arcliitectural steed, Pegasus, on Tuesday, in order
that I might not be unduly hurried on my journey.
Taking Accomac on my way to the battle-field, my
boy, I called upon Colonel Wobert Wobinson, who is
superintending preparations for the draft there, and
was witness to an incident suitable to be recorded
in profane history.
The draft in Accomac, my boy, is positively to take
place on the lltli of September ; but it is not believed
that the enrollment can be finished before the 15th ;
in which case, the draft must inevitably take place on
the 20th. In fact, the Judge-Advocate of the Acco-
mac states positively that the conscription will com-
mence on the 1st of October ; and volunteering is so
brisk that no draft may be required. At least, such is
the report of those best acquainted with the more de-
cisive plans of the TVar Department, which thinks of
joining the Temperance Society.
The exempts were filing their papers of exemption
with Colonel Wobert Wobinson, my boy, and amongst
them was one chap with a swelled eye, a deranged
neck-tie, and a hat that looked as though it miglit
have been used as an elephant's foot-bath. The chap
came in with a heavy walk, and says he:
" Being a married man, war has no terror for me ;
but I am obliged to exempt myself from military
affairs on account of the cataract in my eyes."
188 ORPHEUS C. KERR PAPERS,
Colonel Wobert Wobinson looked at liiin sympa-
thizingly, and says lie : " You might possibly do for a
major-general, ray son, as it is blindness principally
that characterises a majority of our present major-gen-
erals in the field ; but fearing that your absence from
home might cause a prostraton in the liquor business,
I will accept your cataract as valid."
The poor chap sighed until he reached the first hic-
cup, and then says he : "I wish I could cure this here
cataract, which causes my eyes to weep in the absence
of all woe."
" Do your orbs liquidate so freely ?" says the Colo-
nel, with the air of a family physician
" Yes," says the poor chap, gloomily, '' they are like
two continual mill streams."
" Mill streams !" says Colonel Wobinson medita-
tively, " mill streams ! Why, then, you'd better dam
" I think, ray boy, I say I think, that this kindly
advice of Colonel Wobert Wobinson's must have been
misunderstood in some way ; for an instant departure
of several piously-inclined recruits took place precipi-
tately, and the poor chap chuckled like a fiend.
It is the great misfortune of our mother tongue, my
boy, that words of widely-diflPerent meanings have
precisely the same sound, and in using one you seem
to be abusing another.
Arriving near the celebrated Molasses Junction,
where a number of Mackerels were placing a number
of new cars and locomotives on the track — the object
being to delude the Southern Confederacy into taking
a ride in them, when, it was believed, the aforesaid
SECOND SERIES. 189
Confederacy would speedily be destroyed by one of
those " frightful accidents" without which a day on
any American railroad would be a perfect anomaly —
arriving there, I say, I took an immediate survey of
the appointed field of strife.
To the inexperienced civilian eye, my boy, every-
thing appeared to be in a state of chaotic confusion,
which nothing but the military genius of our generals
could make much worse. On all sides, my boy, I be-
held tlie Mackerel chaps marching and countermarch-
ing ; falling back, retiring, retreating, and making re-
trograde movements. Some were looking f )r tlieir re-
giments ; some were insanely looking for their offi-
cers, as though they did not know that the latter have
resided permanently in Washington ever since the war
commenced ; some were making calls on others, and
here and there might be seen squads of Confederates
picking up any little thing they might happen to
Finding the general of the Mackerel Brigade lunch-
ing upon a bottle and tumbler near me, I saluted him,
and says I :
" Tell me, my veteran, how it is that you permit the
Southern Counfederacy to meander thus within your
The general looked toleratingly at me, and says he ;
" I have a plan to entrap the Confederacy, and end
this doomed rebellion at one stroke. Do you mark
that long train of army wagons down there near my
'^ Yes," says I, nervously.
"Well, then, my nice little boy," says the general,
190 ORPHEUS C. KEKR PAPERS.
cautiously, *' I'll tell you what the plan is, Tliese
wagons contain the rations of oar troops. It is my
purpose to induce the celebrated Confederacy to cap-
ture these wagons and attempt to eat those rations. If
the Confederacy will only do that/' says the general,
fiercely, " it will be taken sick on the spot, and we
shall capture it alive."
I could not but feel shocked at this inhuinan artifice,
my boy. The Southerners haye indeed acted in away
to forfeit all ordinary mercy, but still, we should ab-
stain from any retaliatory act savoring of demoniac
malignity. Our foes are at least human beings.
Suppressing my horror, however, I assumed a prac-
tical aspect, and says I :
*' But how are the Mackerel warriors to subsist, my
Napoleon, if you allow the rations to go?"
^'Thunder!" says the general, handing me a paper
from his pocket. " They are to subsist exclusively on
the enem}'. Just peruse this document, which I have
Taking the paper. I found it to be the following
"Whereas, The matter of provisions is a great ex-
pense to the United States of America, besides offer-
ing inducements for unexpected raids on the part of
the famishing foeman ; the Mackerel Brigade is hereby
directed to live entirely upon the Southern Confede-
racy, eating him alive wherever found, and partaking
of no other food.
The Brigade will not be permitted to take any cloth-
SECOND SERIES. 191
ing with it on the march, being required henceforth
to dress exclusively in the habiliments of captured
Wo have done with retrograde movements. No
more lines of retreat will be kept open, and hence-
forth the Mackerel Brigade is to make nothing but
By Older of
The GENERAii of the Mackerel Brig-ade.
This able document, my boy, pleased me greatly as
an evidence that the war had indeed commenced in
earnest ; and though at that moment, I beheld some
half a dozen Confederacies ransacking the tent where
the general kept his mortgages, his bank account, and
other Government property, I felt that our foes were
about to be summarily dealt with at last.
An orderly having finally given notice to the Con-
federacies rummaging within our lines to get to tlieir
proper places, in order that the battle might begin, the
Anatomical Cavalry, under Captain Samyule Sa-mith,
made a headlong charge npon a body of foes who
were destroying a bridge near the middle of the field,
and succeeded in obliging them to remain there.
This brilliant movement was the signal for a general
engagement, and a regiment of Confederacies at once
advanced within our lines and inquired the way to
Having given them the desired information, and al-
lowed a num.ber of other similar regiments to take a
position between the Mackerels and the capital, the
192 OEPHEUS C, KERR PAPERS.
general jjave orders for the Conic Section and the
Orange County Howitzers to fall cautiously back, in
order that the remaining Confederacies might get be-
tween us and Richmond.
You will perceive that by this movement, my boy,
we cut the enemy's force completely in tv/o, thus com-
pelling him to attack us either in the front or in the
rear, and giving him no choice of any other operation
save flank movements. Our plans being thus per-
fected, Captain Villiam Brown, with Company 3, Regi-
ment 5, was ordered to charge into a wood near at
hand, with a view to induce some recently-arrived re-
serve Confederacies to take position in our centre,
-while still others would be likely to flank us on the
riorht and left.
You may remember, my boy, that it has heretofore
been our misfortune to fight on the circumference of
a circle, while the Confederacy had the inside, and
this great strategic scheme was intended to produce a
result vice versa.
It was a great success, my boy — a great success ;
and our troops presently found themselves inside the
most complete circle on record. Yilliam Brown not
only charged into the wood, but staid there ; and
when one of the Orange County Howitzers was dis-
charged with great precision at a reporter who was
caught sneaking into our lines, the report was heard
by the Yenerable Gammon at Washington, causing
that revered man to telegraph to all the papers, that
no one need feel alarmed, as he was perfectly safe, and
that our victory was very complete.
What particular danger the Yenerable Gammon had
SECOND SERIES. 193
incurred, I can't say, my boy ; nor what he knew
abont the battle ; but his dispatch caused renewed
confidence all over the country, and was a great com-
fort to his friends.
Having got the Confederacies just where he wanted
them, the General of the Mackerel Brigade now dis-
patched ten veterans under Sergeant O'Pake to attack
a few hundred foes who had intrenched themselves in
an unseemly manner right among our wagons. The
Mackerels were well received as prisoners of war, and
paroled on the spot ; a proceeding which so greatly
pleased the idolized general, that he at once issued this
It must be understood, that in his recent proclama-
tion directing the Mackerel Brigade to dine exclu-
sively upon Southern Confederacies, the general
commanding did not intend that such dining should
take place without the free consent of aforesaid Con-
it must not be understood that the order concerning
the confiscation of Confederate garments is intended
to authorize a forcible confiscation of such costume, in
opposition to the free will of the wearers.
By "no lines of retreat being kept open," is meant :
no lines of which the general commanding was at that
The General of the Mackerel Brigade.
194 OEPHEUS C. KERR PAPERS.
This admirable order, my boy, produced great enthu-
siasm in the ranks, as no Confederacies had yet been
caught, and there was some danger of starvation in the'
And now, my boy, occurred that magnificent piece
of generalship which is destined to live forever on the
annals of fame, and convince the world that our mili-
tary leaders possess a genius eminently fitting every
one of them for the next Presidency, or any other
peaceful office. By skillful manoeuvring, the gifted
General of the Mackerel Brigade had succeeded in
cutting the enemy's force to pieces, the pieces being
mixed up with our own army. Then came the words :
" Forward, double-quick !"
Facing toward Washington, our vanguard forced the
Confederacies before them to move right ahead. Swift-
ly following the vanguard, and evidently fancying
that it was flying before them, came a regiment of Con-
federacies. Pursuing the latter, as though in triumph,
appeared the Conic Section, Mackerel Brigade ; close-
ly succeeded in its turn by a regiment of Confederacies
in charge of our baggage-wagons , racing after whom
was a regiment of Mackerels ; and so on to the end of
You 'may ask me, my boy, with which side rested
the victory in this remarkable movement ?
That question, mj boy, cannot be decided 3'et, as the
whole procession has scarcely reached Washington ;
but the answer may be said to depend very much upon
whether the last regiment coming in is Mackerel or
The contest, my boy, has assumed a profound meta-
SECOND SERIES. 195
physical aspect, and the development of a little more
military genius on our own side will tend to utterly
confound our enemies and — everybody else.
Orpheus C. Kerr.
INTRODUCING ONCE MORE THE COSMOPOLITAN CLUB, WITH A CU-
RIOUS " LAMENT," AND A STORY FROM THE SPANISH MEMBER.
"WASHiNGTOif , D. C, September 9th, 1862.
You may remember, my boy, that some months ago
there was a trespass of depraved burglarious chaps at
"Wheatland, the seat of Ex-President Buchanan. The
matter might have slipped my own mind, had not the
British member of the Cosmopolitan, last night, read
aloud the following memorandum of the thing, found
in a deserted Confederate camp on the Eappahannock.
The Briton waved his hand for silence, and says he :
BY A CHEVALIER d'iNDUSTRIE.
It really seems as if the trick
Of this here game, secession,
Was bound to bring disgrace upon
Each wirtuous profession.
SECOinD SERIES. 19^
The days of chiyalry are gone,
When gentlemen wos plucky,
And sooner'd starve than lower themselves
To make their swag and lucky.
Why, when I wos a little prig,
And took the junior branches,
We all looked down upon the chap
That traveled vulgar ranches.
It wos beneath a gentleman
To stoop to vulgar stealin's ;
And when I see how things is changed,
It really hurts my feelin's.
We had some dignity, you see,
And upper circles knew it ;
For if a thing wos wicious mean,
We wos too proud to do it !
The crib that wos respectable
Among the higher classes,
We cracked in style, like gentlemen.
And took the spoons and glasses.
But when a crib wos something low—
An author's, or a preacher's
We had too much of self-respect [
To recognize the creatures.
If taking watches wos the lay,
Or handkerchers, or purses,
198 ORPHEUS C. KEEE PAPERS.
We never noticed wulgar nobs,
Nor wictims of rewerses.
But things is changed since Johnny died,
And our profession's fallen
So werrj low, it really ain't
A gentlemanly callin'.
There's some as once wos gentlemen
When cracksmen's art was balmy.
Now shame us all by fig'ring as
Contractors for the army I
What wonder, when our former pal,
A vulgar, sneakin' knave is,
They hang our pictures in a row
With Floyd, and Cobb, and Davis ?
But just as if this wa'n't enough
To make us hide our faces,
A man we once look'd up to, all,
Must add to our disgraces ;
A base, degenerate, shameless cove
Has sullied our profession,
By stoopin' to a lay that is
Depraved beyond expression.
He's activally come and went^
The werry thought's unmannin'—
He's activally gone and robbed
Ex-President Buchanan !
SECOND SERIEfi. 199
Alas ! my boj, there is naught so fallen in huma-
nity, but it may become still more depraved. I have
known members of State Legislatures to be finally
elected Congressmen. After the above chanson had
been read, the Spanish member gave us his story of
DON BOBADIL BA:N"C0
OR, WHO OWNS THE BABY?
"I always respect a man who drinks good Port,
especially if he frequently invites me to take dinner
with him, and hence I have selected as my hero, a
gallant Spaniard, whose fondness for the delicious
juice was never doubted.
" Don Bobadil Banco was a gentleman of good fam-
ily, who graduated with honor at Salamanca, and
retired from thence to Madrid, in company with a
fellow student named Don Philip Funesca. ,The
erudite pair hired lodgings in an aristocratic part of
the city, and after much delay, installed one Dame
Margy as their housekeeper, cook, and chamber-
maid, being resolved to husband their scanty re-
sources until, by coming of age, they could inherit
the estates and fortunes of their fathers.
" It is to be presumed that the friends entered so-
ciety and made consummate fools of themselves, as
very young men generally do when they first mingle
with ladies ; but as that peiiod of their career can pos-
sess very little novelty for most people, I shall only
favor it with this passing notice, and at once introduce
200 OEPHEUS C. KEKR PAPERS.
the gallant pair as they appeared on the night,
in the month of , in the year of our Lord , at
" In a very small room, before a very small window,
was standing a very small table, at the side of which
were two very shabby chairs, on which were seated
two very young men ; and as it was growing very
dark, two very small candles, in two very small
candlesticks, were placed on the very small table, in
company with two very small decanters, filled with
very cheap Port, and two very old goblets, of very
The two very young men remained very still for
a very long time, save when they made very long ap-
plications to the very old goblets of very cheap Port ;
and as you must be very anxious to know whether
these very young men were very ugly or very good
looking, I shall be very happy to profit by this very
opportune state of things, and give a very concise de-
scription of their personal charms.
" Don Bobadil was very tall, very thin, with very
long black hair, very small black eyes ; very yellow
complexion, very good teeth, and was dressed very
^' Don Philip was very short, very fat, witn very long
brown hair, very large brown eyes, very fair com-
plexion, very large mouth, and was plainly attired.
" They both looked very happy, and drank very
" ' Well, Philip,' said Bobadil, at length, ' a bache-
lor's life, in Madrid, is not quite so charming as in
Salamanca ; upon my word I have almost become a
- SECOND SERIES. 201
limb of society, and it will prove a sad dismember-
ment when I go to my father's villa. These gay seno-
ritas have so completely infatuated me, that I am
never happy out of their company, and when I think
of leaving them altogether, it makes me really misera-
ble,' and the Don consoled himself with a huge swal-
low of wine.
* " I perfectly agree with yon,' answered Don Philip,
* and dread the idea of leaving the dear charmers
without making one of them a prisoner.'
" * We must have more gold soon,' said Bobadil,
gloomily, taking a goblet of Port.
" ' You speak truly, my friend. Our purses are
growing very light, and nothing but wealthy wives
will make them heavy. How unjust is the decree that
makes us wait until we are older before we can help
ourselves to the treasures of our families. Here are
nearly thirty hairs upon my chin, and yet the grim
old hidalgoes call me a boy yet. Sancta Maria ! I
should like to cross swords with some of those shaking
grandees, just to convince them that I have the
strength of a man, if I have not his years.'
" *The wish is perfectly natural, Don Philip, yet it
can do us no good at present, when our last flagons of
wine stand before us, and Dame Margy grows clamor-
ous for her dues,' said Bobadil, imbibing large draughts
of grape juice.
" ' d, heatissimo, neustra Senora ! Don't dwell on
unpleasant facts, Don Bobadil,' responded the other ;
' we must replenish our treasures, and the means to do
it should be our present consideration. We must
marry stores of maravedis.'
202 ORPHEUS C. KERR PAPEE3.
" 'That is coming to the point, my dear friend, and
yonr words are ^vorthy of a sage ; but, my dear
Philip, to tell the truth, I dread marriage for one rea-
son, namely : that, by engaging in it, one becomes
liable to incur responsibilities known as babies. I do
hate those noisy little nuisances as I hate the devil,
and, to have one constantly squalling in my ears,
would soon make a madman of me,' and our hero
drank heartily of liquor.
" ' I will allow the truth of what you say,' replied
Philip ; ' the cry of an infant is not quite as musical
as the harp of Orpheus. Still, it is better to endure
such annoyance than to go about with empty purses,
and when one who is poor desires to have money, he
must endure matrimony, or become a rogue. Now
there is Lisette, ready to fall into my arms at any mo-
ment, ^id bring me a long purse; but I will never
leave you a bachelor, though I starve.'
" Tears arose involuntarily to the eyes of Bobadil,
as his friend spoke thus disinterestedly, and, after
holding a cup of wine to his lips for some moments,
he answered :
" ' My dear fellow, you are a sage and I am a fool.
You shall not starve for me though I have to become
the father of five hundred little imps to save you.
Yes, dear Philip, I will sacrifice myself upon the altar
of friendship, and become a victim of Hymen.' Here
the emotions of the Spaniard became so violent that
a large quantity of Port wine was necessary to pre-
" Don Philip started from his seat, and eyed his
friend with every mark of unbounded surprise.
" ' Can you do it soon ?' lie asked hurriedly.
" * Before another pair of days have shown their
tails above the tide of time.' answered Bobadil with
poetic fervor, having recourse to the decanter confain-
" ' My dear friend, you must be drunk.'
" 'No, Don Philip, I am sober as a monument.'
" ' Has some fair sonora smiled upon you?'
" ' Not only has she smiled upon me, but she has
actually laughed at me. Port woukl never intoxicate
" ' Per Dio I I never heard of this before, Bobadil.'
" ' Nevertheless, Don Philip, it is true as a pater.
My pride would not allow me to mention my case to
you, until I became successful in my suit ; and when
that was decided, I waited until you should be simi-
larly circumstanced, and we might marry together.
Your frequent absence from our lodgings, at night,
aroused my suspicions, and I resolved to lind out
your secret before imparting mine. Now that you
have named 3^our mistress, I will acknowledge that
I, also, have one, w^hose name is Leonora, and I intend
to make her my wife, w^hen you lead Lisette to the
" 'I am rejoiced to hear you speak thus,' answered
Don Philip, ' and Lisette will partake of my joy ;
but, tell me, Bobadil, wnll you gain wealth by this
" ' Gold enough to build a second Escurial, my dear
Philip. Leonora is the daughter of a rich Jew, and
can show more maravedis than the Infanta of Spain.'
204: ORPHEUS 0. KERE PAPERS.
" ^ Better and better. But how is it that her father
will allow her to wed a Catholic V inquired Philip.
"' He is not to be consulted in the matter at all. I
may as well relate the circumstances of our acquaint-
ance, and you will at once perceive that the Israel-
ite's consent is not required. Two weeks ago, I was
passing a small house not far from the Plaza del Kio,
and, chancing to look up, beheld the face of a beau-
tiful Senora looking from a window. Our glances
met, whereupon she drew back with a blush, and I
gallantly kissed the tip of my glove. Although she
immediately drew shut the lattice, 1 fancied, from
her look, that she was not displeased with my con-
duct, and set about finding out who she was. I soon
ascertained that her father was a rich Jew, named
Miguel, that his wife was dead, and that he lived with
his daughter and a Avrinkled duenna, ^vhom he had
enlisted to watcli Leonora. Much as I despise Jews,
the beauty of Leonora bad sunk into my heart, and I
resolved to have an interview with her, though our
most Holy Church, should excommunicate me for it.
Accordingly, I passed the house every day for a week,
and each time the lady withdrew from the window
with a blush, as I saluted her. This encouraged me
to scrape acquaintance with the pythoness who guard-
ed her, and by means of several small bribes, I was
at length admitted to a private interview with Leo-
nora. My idol was coy at first, but after one or two
stolen visits, she returned my passion in an. honorable
way, and will become my bride whenever it may
please me to carry her off from her old thief of a
SECOND SERIES. 205
But the Jew has all the gold,' said Don Philip,
" ' Not so,' replied Bobadil. ' My angel has a for-
tune of her own locked up in a trunk, and I shall take
good care to secure it in the first place.'
" His friend's countenance was lighted by a smile,
but it passed away as he again spoke —
" ' Our priests will never consent to your marriage
with a Jewess.'
"'What an owl you are,' retorted Don Bobadil;
* Leonora shall pass for as good a Catholic as the Pope
" ' My dear friend, you delight me !' exclaimed Don
Philip, springing from his seat and embracing Boba-
dil ; ' let us then make ourselves and our mistresses
happy at once — this very night! You can go after
Leonora while I seek Lisette.'
" Our hero found it necessary to take a drink of
something after this proposition, and then responded ;
*' 'Spoken like a Spaniard and a gentleman; I will
go to the house of Miguel and bring tlie trunk of trea-
sure from thence — that, you know, should be secured
first. After bringing it hither I will go back after
Leonora, and when next we meet I shall be a married
" ' Do so, Don Bobadil,' returned Philip, ' and I will,
in like manner, gain the fortune and hand of Lisette.
Let ns hasten, my friend, and we shall be independ-
ently wealthy before morning.'
"Together they drank the remainder of the wine,
and having given certain orders to Dame Margy, left
the house, each taking a diflferent route.
206 ORPHEUS C. KEER PAPERS.
" It rained in torrents, when mj^ hero wrapped his
long cloak about him and set out. The tormenting
drops ran the length of his nose and poured into his
bosom, they crawled damply down his boots, they
trickled grievously into his ears, they clung to his long
black hair, and soaked through his sombrero ; yet did
the brave Spaniard press onward, as a hero advances
to the breastworks amid a storm of shot and shells.
Love had cast its thickest blanket about his heart, and
a flame burned glaringly there that nothing but ma-
trimony and maravedis could quench. Arriving in
front of his mistress's abode, my hero picked up a
handful of sand, and threw it lightly against a win-
dow pane, such being the signal by which he was to
make known his presence when Miguel was at home.
Almost immediately a lattice was opened, and a wo-
man's head, ornamented with a scarlet cap de nuit
was thrust out.
"'Who's that?' demanded the duenna, snappishly.
"'It's only me,' responded Don Bobadil, in low
" ' And who's me T asked the amiable woman.
"'Don Bobadil Banco.'
" ' Don Bobadil Banco had better go home, if he
don't w^ant to have his head broken with a flower-
pot,' snarled the duenna.
" ' Now, my dear Laura.'
" ' Don't ' dear' me ! Are you drunk V
" ' I must see Donna Leonora,' said Bobadil.
"' You are drunk!' screamed the lady.
" ' No, I am not ; but, pray, make less noise, my
good Laura, or you will have the alguazils about my
SECOND SERIES. 207
ears. Tell your lady that I am here, and you shall
have a purse of ducats.'
" * Oh ! ah ! I will,' replied tlie mercenary woman,
retiring quickly from the window and again closing
" The adventurous Spaniard stood in soak for half an
hour, at the end of which Dame Laura, cautiously ad-
mitted him at the door, and he soon knelt before his
mistress. Donna Leonora was a charming little bru-
nette, with raven curls and sparkling black eyes full
" ' Sancta Maria ! what is the matter, Don Bobadil?'
she exclaimed, eyeing the kneeling personage with
" * Dearest Leonora, idol of my heart !' replied Bob-
adil, clasping her waist, ' here on my knees let me im-
plore you to become mine forever, and make me hap-
pier than the angels. Eecent events, which I cannot ex-
plain at present, have rendered it necessary for me to
thus intrude upon you at an unseasonable hour, and
implore that your promise to become my bride may be
at once fulfilled.'
" ' But this is so sudden,' murmured the lady.
" ' Pardon my haste, dear Leonora,' answered Don
Bobadil. ' I know how exquisitely sensitive your
nature is ; but heaven destined us for each other, and
when I leave you, I leave a part of myself.'
" ' The gentleman speaks wisely,' interrupted the
duenna. ' Your father has smoked his opium and will
sleep until after meridian to-morrow. Go with Don
Bobadil, Senora, and Miguel shall learn all from me
when he awakes.'
208 ORPHEUS C. KERR PAPERS.
"Leonora resisted for awhile; but her objections
were speedily overcome, and she at length yielded to
the combined entreaties of her lover, and subtle rea-
soning of her mercenary duenna. Such is love.
" ' Here is a load for you, Senor,' said the latter per-
sonage, pointing to a chest studded with brass nails
that stood near. ' Carry it off as quickly as possible,
and return for your mistress when you have placed
her fortune in a safe place.'
" Our hero at once acceded to plans so consonant
with his own, and after embracing the Seuorita, he
seized the chest and hastened with it to his lodgings.
It was a heavy load for one man, and the rain still
poured furiously down ; but the lover danced on like
a feather before the vagrant zephyrs of spring, and
soon deposited his precious freight in the room where
he bad lately held converse with Don Philip. This
done, ho hastened back to the house of Don Miguel,
impatient to secure his fair bride ; but Dame Laura
met him at the door, with her fingers pressed upon
her lips, and her form barring his further progress.
" ' Hist ! not a word !' she whispered cautiously.
'The Jew was aroused by the noise you made de-
scending the stairs, and would not be satisfied until
he had searched the house with a candle in one hand
and a drawn sword in the other. He is quiet now,
and if not again disturbed, will soon sleep again. Ke-
turn to your lodgings, and when Miguel slumbers, I
will hasten thither with my lady. ISTot a word ! Go !'
*' Conquering his impatience, Don Bobadil thrust a
purse of slim proportions into the bony hand of liis
SECOND SERIES. 209
confidante, aud turned into tlie street without breath-
ing a syllable.
"As he ascended the stairs to his own room, the
sound of voices fell upon his ear, and fearing for the
safety of his treasure, he rushed headlong into the
apartment w^ith his sword drawn and a determination
to slaughter the intruders. His anger was soon turned
to pleasure, Avhen he beheld Don Philip seated beside
a very pretty female, whose hands he held in his own,
and whose ringletted head rested upon his shoulder,
with an air of familiarity that would have been the
death of any old maid, whose sight could have been
blighted by such a scene. He also noticed a chest
semewhat smaller than the one he had obtained by
right of seizure, standing near the window, and felt
doubly happy in the conviction that his friend had
brought home something more substantial than a wife.
" ' Lisette, this is my friend, Don Bobadil Banco,'
said Don Philip, leading the lady forward and pre-
senting her. ' This, Don Bobadil, is my wife, and
though she has no proud title, I shall be proud to pre-
sent her to my family as one worthy of a gentleman's
'"My dear Philip, allow me to congratulate you
on the possession of a lady, who, if her virtue equals
her beauty, must indeed be an angel,' and our hero
bowled ^vith his accustomed courte y to the blushing
" * But where is the mistress;, of whom you boasted
a short time since?' asked Philip, glancing towards
the door, as though expecting to behold a fourth per-
210 ORPHEUS C. KERR PAPERS.
son. * I supposed that I should find her here with a
" ' The Jew took me for a thief, and woke up, or
Donna Leonora would be here now. But her duenna
has promised to bring her hither soon and we must
" ' ilien take a seat, Don Bobadil, and I will relate
the manner in which I became possessed of Lisette,
for I know you are dying to hear it, though your
pride hides your curiosity. While we were at Sala-
manca, I became acquainted with a poor orphan girl,
who won ray heart by her beauty and virtuous con-
duct. Other students saw and admired her ; but their
admiration was not such as honor sanctioned, and the
girl left the place, preferring a strange place with quiet,
to a home in which she was constantly subject to in-
sult and annoyance. At the time I knew not the
reasons for her sudden departure, and it filled me with
sorrow. I hid my feelings from you, however, fearing
that your disposition for mirth might lead you to make
a butt of me. I came hither with you, and beheld
many fair ladies, but to none did my heart incline, and
tlie fair orphan of Salamanca remained mistress of my
thoughts. About a week after our arrival in Madrid,
you went to a ball one evening, leaving me to comfort
Dame Margy until you came back. Not much liking
such company, I strolled forth to the grand piazza and
entered a theatre with the crowd. Numerous familiar
faces appeared in various parts of the building, and
w^hile I went about to greet my friends, the play was
commenced. I believe I should not have looked upon
the stage at all, so busily was I engaged, had not the
BEOOND SERIES. 211
tones of a voice made me start back in amazement,
and look wildly toward the performers. Kear the
centre of the stage, clad in the costume of her lole^
and bowing in a flowery train, was a form and face
that sent the blood hurtling through ray veins like
molten lead. After standing like one petrified for
some moments, I suddenly quitted tlie boxes, and
gained admittance behind tlie scenes. I had not been
mistaken ; the orphan of Salamanca and the actress of
Madrid were one. I need not tell an ardent lover like
yourself the efi"ect of such a meeting ; it is sufficient to
say, that Lisette bade farewell to the stage, whither
necessity had forced her, and took from thence a libe-
ral compensation. Such is the history of my amour,
Don Bobadil ; and, as we each have caskets at hand,
I propose that we become acquainted with their con-
"'Donna Leonora owns the one I brought hither,
and it may displease her should I open it,' answered
" 'JN'ot at all, my friend ; she is to be your wife be-
fore morning, and what belongs to your wife belongs
equally to you.'
" ' Oh ! very well,' responded Bobadil.
" ' I will display the riches of Lisette first to encour-
age you, and you may follow with the dowry of Senora
Leonoia,' said Don Philip, taking off the lid of the
" Our hero looked on in surprise, as his friend dis-
played its contents, and his pride made him tremble,
lest his own portion should prove less costly. There
were gorgeous robes, satin slippers, magnificent orna-
212 ORPHEUS C. KERB PAPERS.
ments of gold, sparkling brilliants, bracelets, neck-
laces, and brooches, set with rubies, emeralds, and dia-
monds, a tiara sparkling like a constellation of mid-
night stars, and an immense leather bag filled with
'• ^ Why, Don Philip, you have all the riches of In-
dus here !' exclaimed Don Bobadil, opening wide his
eyes in astonishment.
" * So much for your discrimination, Bobadil,' re-
turned Philip. 'These robes belong to an actress'
wardrobe, and are more gaudy than valuable. These
rubies, emeralds, and diamonds are pieces of colored
and crystal glass, intended to dazzle unsophisticated
eyes, but nearly worthless to the jeweler ; the gold
setting is worth its weight in brass, and these coins
alone are genuine. But let us now look upon your
dowry, my friend, when, I doubt not, that we shall be
made to wink by the glitter of pure gems and true
*' As Don Bobadil listened to the explanations of
his friend, his eyes glistened, and at the conclusion
he walked proudly towards his chest, with a feeling of
" ' I will not boast,' he said, haughtily ; ' but Jews
are not overfond of tinsel, and my mistress's robes
have not a value peculiar to the dimly-lighted stage,'
so saying, he threw back the cover of his treasure cas-
'* A shade of disappointment rested upon his features
at the first view, but he disdained to give it utterance,
and carelessly threw aside a robe of cheap material,
trimmed with imitation ermine. But, alas, the next
SECOND SEEIE8. 213
was a garment of scarlet, with bells attached to the
skirt ; then one of green, with laded tinsel ornaments ;
another of white flannel, with tarnished silver lace stars
about the waist.
" During this exhibition, Lisette was apparentlj^ en-
deavoring to swallow her handkerchief, while Don
Philip looked anxiously toward the ceiling, as thougli
its intricate pattern had suddenly become an object of
"Sternly did Don Bobadil delve into his mine of
female apparel, expecting soon to strike a vein of mon-
strous diamonds with a mosaic of gold. He reaches
it at last ! Yes, there it is ! Mark his glance of pride
and exultation as he says :
" ' Don Philip, will you assist me ? The Jew's
ducats are very heavy, and the bag containing them
rather larger than a Senora's night-cap.'
" Don Philip did as he was desired, when suddenly
our hero dropped his end of the bag, with a cry more
piercing than that of an enraged hyena. Oh shades of
Mater Money I Por vida del didblo I The bag
Tnoved^ there came a cry, and there appeared in the
opening of its leather covering the head of a haby !
" ' Oh, Holy Virgin ! Thunder and lightning ! Fire !
Murder ! Pm lost, tormented, tortured, cheated !
Cruel Leonora ! Infamous woman ! d — d old duenna !'
roared the unhappy Bobadil, stamping and steaming
like an infuriated tea-pot.
" * Be calm, my dear friend, I pray you be calm,'
cried Don Philip, vainly endeavoring to conquer his
mirth, while Lisette rolled on the floor in a paroxysm
214 ORPHEUS C. KEER PAPERS.
" ' Don't tell me to be calm !' bellowed BobadiL
*Look there! My borror, detestation, abhorrence — a
lahy ! Hear it squeal ! I'll strangle the cursed little
fiend ! Oh, oh, oh !— diablo !'
" * You will arouse the neighborhood.'
" ' What do I care ! I'm betrayed, swindled, ruined,
seduced I Stab me, shoot me, make a bloody corpse
of me. Kill that baby, or I'll make your wife an or-
" ' What's all this ?' asked Dame Margy, darting into
the apartment and holding up her hands in wild aston-
" ' Don't you hear it yell V howled Bobadil, tearing
out his hair by handfuUs. ' It's a baby !'
" Dame Margy came very near fainting, and Lisette
was obliged to go to her assistance, while Don Philip
approached his enraged friend and succeeded in sooth-
" ^ Act like a man,' he said, * and take measures to
punish the perpetrator of the infamous outrage. The
baby is a poor innocent little thing, and Lisette will
attend to it. Lisette, look after the baby ! Now^ Don
Bobadil, repress your emotions.'
"The retired actress obeyed her intended husband
with alacrity, assisted by Dame Margy, who was fully
revived, and our hero burst into tears.
" ' Oh, Philip !' he blubbered, < miserable wretch,
that I am, what shall I do? That infamous woman
will be here in a moment, and I know not how to act.
Oh ! curse that baby !'
" ' Woman's wit shall aid you,' said the hitherto silent
Lisette, after whispering to Dame Margy, who imme-
SECOND SERIES. 215
diately left the apartment. *Don Bobadil, you must
assume the attire of your housekeeper, and leave Philip
and me to account for your supposed absence, when
Donna Leonora arrives.'
" As she finished speaking, the old housekeeper re-
turned with a promiscuous assortment of female gar-
ments, and before our hero had tim0 to resist, he pre-
sented the appearance of a stout old lady
" ' Don't speak a word,' said Don Philip, placing an
immense bonnet and veil upon his head, 'you must
pass for Dame Margy, and leave me to settle with
your cruel mistress.'
'^ Though not quite satisfied with this arrangement,
Don Bobadil accepted in silence, especially as the
sound of approaching footsteps fell upon his ear, as
they tumbled him to a distant seat.
^'Dame Margy fied through an opposite door just ?s
two figures, deeply veiled, entered the apartment.
" ' Holy Yirgin ! who has rifled my chest ? And
where is Don Bobadil?' exclaimed Leonora, clasping
" 'Lady,' said Don Philip, advancing to meet her
with much dignity^ * as the friend of Don Bobadil
Banco, it is my duty to inform you that he has dis-
covered ALL, and left Madrid forever.'
" ' All !' exclaimed the lady and duenna in a
" * Yes, senora, my friend hates babies !'
" Like two agitated fawns, Leonora and her attend-
ant dropped their veils and sprang to the side of the
216 ORPHEUS C. KERR PAPERS. ^
" * Why ! — what — who has done this V exclaimed
the fair Jewess, quivering like an aspen leaf.
" ' You, lady, can best answer that question.'
"*It is false! My whole fortune was in that
chest ! I am cheated, deceived, ruined !'
" * Peace ! infamous woman !' thundered Don Boba-
dil, no longer able to restrain his rage, and darting
toward her. But he stepped upon his skirts, and pitched
headlong to the floor.
" ' Do I dream V murmured Leonora in affright.
" * You do not,' screamed our hero, tucking his pet-
ticoats under his arms, and tearing ofl:' the veil that
concealed his face. Behold ! false one ! behold ! Don
Bobadil Banco !'
" ' Dear Bobadil, you would not kill me V
" ' ]^o, Leonora, you shall live to repent of this.
Take that wretched baby to its father, or I will stran-
gle it before your eyes.'
" * By the God we all worship, I swear I never saw
the child before !' exclaimed Leonora, looking solemnly
" ' Her air of truthfulness carried conviction with
it, and Bobadil stood like one thunderstruck ; but
soon a new expression fell upon his countenance, and
he turned gravely to the duenna.
" ' Perhaps you own the — the baby !'
" * You're a nasty dirty beast !' retorted the chaste
creature, rushing from the room like a ricochetting
" *I can answer for the innocence of Laura,' said
"Rebuked by her dignified manner, our hero men-
SECOND SERIES. 217
tally exonerated her from all blame ; yet there was the
baby, screaming lustily, and no other valuables were
found in the chest.
" * Forgive me, if I have wronged you,' he said, pen-
itently, ' I judged too quickly ; but then I took those
gaudy robes from yonder chest, and — xoho owns the
" *I see how it is,' said Donna Leonora composedly,
turning toward the door, ' you have adopted this plan
to rob me of the little fortune I possessed. I would
willingly incur a much greater loss to escape from
such a monster. Keep my gold, Don Bobadil, and say
you become a better man.'
" Our hero stood motionless, involved in a maze of
doubts and fears ; and the lady was about departing,
when Lisette suddenly sprang forward, and prevented
" * Stop, lady !' she exclaimed, ^ the trick has gone
far enough — I own the hahy /'
" ' Lisette speaks truly, and Iain the hahy^s father P
said Don Philip, grasping the hand of our perplexed
" ^ Yillain !' exclaimed Bobadil, feeling for his
u i 'W'retch !' screamed Leonora, feeling for her
" ' I humbly crave your mercy, until you have
heard my story,' replied Don Philip, coolly placing
his arm about the waist of his Lisette. ' This lady,' he
continued, ' is my wife, and has been such for two
years. I have kept my secret thus rigidly, that it
should not reach the ears of my family until I had ar-
218 OEPHEUS C. KEEK PAPEJIS.
rived at man's estate ; but when you determined to
take a wife I resolved to make you my confidant.
While you were at the house of Miguel to-night, I
brought my wife and hahy hither, wishing to surprise
jou at your return. I found your chest filled with the
riches I afterwards showed you as the property of an
actress, and prompted by a spirit of mirth, I exchanged
its contents for those of our own. Knowing your hos-
tility to babies, I placed the young Bohadil in your
casket also, and had you taken notice of small things,
you would have observed that I left the lid partly
open. It's only a reminiscence of college trickery,
my dear Bobadil, and if it has given offence, behold the
culprit at your feet.'
^' The friendly smile of his friend and the imj^loring
glance of Lisette, completely overcame our hero's
resentment, and he extended his hand in all gentle-
ness ; then turning quickly to the silent, though smil-
ing Leonora, he fell at her feet, exclaiming :
" ' Dear lady, we are both victims of our friend's
frolic, and there should be no anger between us. I do
dislike babies so much, that the sight of one makes
me desperate ; but now that all is explained, I hope
you will forgive me.'
''The lady smiled so encouragingly upon him, that
he soon stood face to face — I mean lips to lips — with
" ' Let us seek a priest,' said Don Philip, with
" How this proposition was received, may be as-
sumed from the fact that Dame Margy soon locked up
an empty house. How Miguel the Jew conducted
SECOND SERIES. 219
when he awoke next morning ; how the families of
our friends received the news of tlieir scions' mar-
riages, and how the young gentlemen felt themselves,
are matters not explained by history ; but it is certain
that Don Bobadil and Don Philip were never again
in want of ducats, and it is also certain that if any
one wished to see an angry man, he could be gratified
by eyeing the youngest Banco in a suspicious manner,
and asking in mysterious tones — '' Who owns the
At the conclusion of this exemplary Spanish tale,
my boy, we " adjourned " our slumbers to Willard's.
Orpheus C. Keer.
ILLUSTRATING THE IMPERTURBABLE CALMNESS OF THE NATIONAL
CAPITOL, AND NOTING THE MEMORABLE INVASION OF ACCOMAC.
Washington, D. C, September 12th, 1862.
As I sit looking out of my window, my boy, on the
street below, and notice how tranquilly all things are
going on here, despite the excitement of the time, a
deep sense of satisfaction steals over me, and the
American Eagle of patriotic pride flaps his breezy
pinions on the oak tree of my heart. Tliough I have
just been laughing myself almost sick at the ludicrous
manner in which my friend, the Confederacy, has
walked right straight into the cunning trap prepared
for his destruction by our own noble and profound
generals, actually hastening his own annihilation by
rushing blindly through our lines, and capturing the
twenty or thirty artful villages, towns, and srarrisona
left there for the express purpose of tempting him to
his dreadful doom — though I have just been SDlitting
my sides over this roaring case of ridiculous suicide,
my boy, the city of Washington still maintains its
calmness ! Ever conscious that conquer we must, for
our cause it is just, this city remains as placid as a
summer dream ; nearly all the liquor-shops doing a
SECOND SERIES. 221
good business through the day, and the evening find-
ing a majority of our army officers at their posts.
Lamp-posts, my boy.
There is something touchingly grand in the cabn-
ness of Wpshington under such circumstances, and it
reminds me of a pleasing little incident in the Sixth
There was a female millinery establishment on the
third floor of a building composed principally of
stairs, fed with frequent small rooms, and the expa-
triated French comtesse, who realized fashionable
bonnets there, used one of her windows to display her
wares. At this window, my boy, she always kept a
young woman of much bloom and symmetry, with the
latest Style on her head, and an expression of unut-
terable smile on her face. A young chap carrying a
trumpet in the Fire Department happened to notice
that this angel of fashion was always at the window
when he went by ; and as the thought that she par-
ticularly admired his personal charms crept over hira,
he at once adopted the plan of passing by every day,
attired in the garments best calculated to render fire-
going manhood most beautiful to the eye. He donned
a vest representing in detail the Sydenham flower-show
on a yellow ground, wore inexpressibles representing
innumerable black serpents ascending white columns,
assumed a neck-tie concentrating all the highest
glories of the Aurora Borealis, mounted two breast-
pins and three studs torn from some glass-house, and
wore a hat that slanted on his head in an engaging
and intelligent manner. Day after day he passed be-
fore the millinery establishment, my boy, still behold-
222 OEPHETJS C. KEER PAPERS.
ing the beloved object at the window, and occasion-
ally placing his hand npon his heart in such a way as
to show a large and gorgeous seal-ring containing the
hair of a fellow-fireman who had caught such a cold at
a great fire that he died some years after. " How
cam she is !" says he to himself, " and she's as pretty
as ninety's new hose-carriage. It seems to me," says
the young chap to himself, stooping down to roll up
the other leg of his pants — " it seems to me that I
never see anything so cam. She observes my daily
agoing and yet she don't so much as send somebody
down to see if there's any overcoats in the front
One day, my boy, a venerable Irish gentleman,
keeping a boarding-house and ice-cream saloon in the
basement of the establishment, happened to go to sleep
on the stairs with a lighted camphene lamp in his
hand, and pretty soon the bells were ringing for a con-
flagration in that district. Immediately our gallant
firemen were on their way to the spot ; and having
first gone through forty-two streets on the other side
of the city to wake the people up there and apprise
them of their great danger, reached the dreadful scene,
and instantly began to extinguish the flames by bring-
ing all the furniture out of a honse not more than three
blocks below. In the midst of these self-sacrificing ef-
forts, a form was seen ta dart into the burning build-
ing like a spectre. It was the enamored young chap
who carried a trumpet in the department. He had
seen the beloved object sitting at the window, as
usual, and was bent upon saving her, even though he
missed the exciting fight around the corner. Keach-
SKCOx\D SERIES. 223
ing the millinery-room door, he could see the object
standing there in the midst of a sea of fire. " How
cam she is," says he. "Miss Milliner," says he, "don't
you see you're all in a blaze ?" But still she stood at
the window in all her calmness. The devoted young
chap turned to a fellow-fireman who was just then se-
lecting two spring bonnets and some ribbon for his
wife, in order to save them from the flames, and says
he : " Jakey, what shall I do ?" But Jakey was at that
time picking out some artificial fiowers for his young-
est daughter, my boy, and made no answer. Unablo
to reach the devoted maid, and rendered desperate by
the thought that she must be asleep in the midst of her
danger, the frantic young chap madly hurled his trum-
pet at her. It struck her, and actually hnocked her
head off ! Horrified at what he had done, the excited
chap called himself a miserable wretch, and was led
out by the collar. It was Jakey who did this deed of
kindness, and says he : " What's the matter with you,
my covey ?" The poor young chap wrung his hands,
and says he : " I've killed her, Jakey, I've killed her —
and she so cam." Jakey took some tobacco, and then
says he : " Why, that was only a pasteboard gal, j^ou
poor devil." And so it was, my boy — so it was ; but
the afifair had such an efiect upon the young chap that
he at once took to drinking, and when delirium tre-
mens marked him for its own, his last words were:
"I've killed her, Jakey, I've killed her — and she so
Washington, my boy, is "cam" in the midst of a
conflagration. That is to say, the Government is
-224 ORPHEUS C. KERR PAPERS.
" cam," they say ; and it may be doubted whether it
would be otherwise, even with its head knocked off.
The other day, I paid another visit to the Mackerel
camp across the river, and was present at a meeting
of officers called to debate upon the propriety of pre-
senting a sword to the beloved general, for his heroism
in the late great battle. Captain Samyule Sa-mith
was in favor of the presentation, and says he : " Our
inimitable leader, which is the admiration of every-
body, richly deserves the blade in question. In the
thickest of that deadly fray, his coat-tails were torn
entirely off by a parrot shell."
Captain Yilliam Brown placed tbe bottle on the ta-
ble again, and says he :
"At which joint were tlie tails amputated, Sam-
Samyule took a little more sugar with his, and says
" Close to the buttons."
" Ah !" says Yilliam, " which way was the con-
queror's face turned at the time ?"
" I can't say," says Samyule ; " but I don't see what
that has to do with it."
" That's because you have a feeble intelleck, Sam-
yule," says Villiam, mildly. " The human form," says
Yilliam, reasoningly, " has such variations of surface,
that a projectile hurled at it in a straight line, cannot
simply graze it to any extent without making a wound
in some place. The coat-tails of the human form,"
says Yilliam, lucidly, ''could not without injury to
that form be severed at the buttons by a ball, unless
they were sticking straight out at the instant; and it
SECOND SERIES. 225
is important that the United States of America should
know whether the face of the wearer was turned to-
ward the Southern Confederacy, or in an opposite di-
rection, at the exact moment of the disaster."
The electrifying wisdom of this thoughtful speech,
my boy, had the effect ta produce an immediate ad-
journment of the general's friends ; for when the test
of anatomy is applied to a man's bravery, that bravery
becomes a mere matter of form.
The general, my boy, is the idol of his Mackerel
children, and as our armies slowly advance to deal the
death-blow to this impious rebellion, it will be proved
that he was not responsible for a single one of the mis-
takes he has made, and could have taken Kichmond
long ago, but for his inability to do so. Heaven for-
give these Jacobin black-republicans who object to his
being President in 1865 ! This is the prayer of twenty
millions of free white men under the Constitution, as
was very justly observed to me by a political chap
from New Haven last week. On Tuesday, the Mack-
erel Brigade was on the outskirts of Accomac — Com-
pany 3, Regiment 1, being sent ahead, under Colonel
Wobert Wobinson, to watch the movements of some
regiments of Confederacies, who were believed to be
either there or in South Carolina. The advance-guard
stayed there two days, my boy, and then an orderly
came ridino- in to the general, with the request that
he would immediately send re-enforcements and pro-
visions, as Company 3, Regiment 1, was in danger of
starvation and defeat, at short notice.
The general ceased fanning himself for a moment,
and says he to the perspiring orderly : -
226 ORPHEUS C. KERR PAPERS.
" I have heard your request, m}^ child ; but before I
comply with it, I wish to know what is the present
political complexion of Colonel Wobinson."
The half-starved orderly clasped his thin hands to-
gether, and says he :
" I don't know ; but for God's sake, general, send us
something to eat, and some help, or not one of us can
The general waved his hand magisterially, and says
" That's very true. But I must first know what are
the sentiments of Colonel "Wobinson on the negro
The orderly might have responded, my boy, had he
not fainted just then from weakness. In pity for his
comrades, orders were at once given for the transport-
ation of provisions, and re-enforcements to Company 3
before the end of the month ; and had the before men-
tioned Confederacies delayed marching into Accomac
until that time, I should not be oblige i now to chro-
nicle another of those disasters to our arms, which the
traitorous harangues of Wendell Philips have so out-
If this war is to be prosecuted with vigor, my boy, we
must repose unlimited confidence in the ability of the
Administration and of our generals, resolutely frown-
ing down all Jacobin demonstrations at home, and suf-
fering our leaders to be interfered with by no one but
each other. If we permit civilians to manage matters,
the country will be undone ; but if, on the contrary,
we trust everything to our generals, the country will
be " done " — brown.
'second series. 227
Luckily for us all, tlie occupation of Accomac by the
celebrated Southern Confederacy, is a part of the
great plan of the General of the Mackerel Brigade to
end this rebellion in one crushing blow, and as soon as
the entire Confederacy shall have entered Accomac in
safety, the Mackerel Brigade will proceed to bag it.
You don't see exactly how this is to be done, eh?
There you go again, my boy ! always meddling with
what you don't understand, and presuming, in your
civilian imbecility, to doubt the practicability — not to
say the utility — of a covert invincibilit}^, rendering it
a futility on the part of Southern agility to take for
weak debility what is really strategic facility, and
bound, in its great fertility of w^arlik-e inventibility
and utter reliability, to turn all the foe's agility to a
final accountability, that shall cause him, in future
humility, to treat us, at least, with civility.
Such, my boy, is the Mackerel plan, to a T.
This strategy's like some plan for grain depending
so much on a fall of rain, that, in less than a week,
should the drought remain, 'twould ruin it altogether.
It pondereth blindly whether or no the opposite hosts
will do so-and-so : and how it will end at last, you
know, dependeth upon the " whether."
Okpheus 0. Kerb.
COMMENCING WITH HISTORICAL REFERENCE; RELATING THE EPI-
SODE OF SPURIOSO GRIMALDI, AND DETAILING THE LAMENTABLE
FAILURE OF CAPTAIN SAMYULE SA-SMITH TO PERISH HEROI-
Washington, D. C, September 20, 1862.
I AM in a star-spangled state of mind, my boy, in
consequence of our recent great victories, and would
most respectfully request the Governors of all the
States to push forward re enforcements immediately.
Having rashly ventured into Accomac after forage
and the pursuit of happiness, the well-known South-
ern Confederacy is now hemmed-in with much car-
nage, and finds itself hem'd and haw'd. The South,
the South, we love her still, no love than ours pro-
founder ; and, having cornered her at last, we've
thrown our arms around her.
Let us rejoice together, my boy, over the victory
that has brought new lustre to our flag, and proceed to
extract from history a few parallels calculated to indi-
cate that the United States of America are somewhat
superior Jto the ancients in the art of war.
At the battle of Thermopylae the heroic Greeks en-
gaged in the conflict with their foes to the number ot
some thousands, and as their foes also prosecuted hos-
SECOND SERIES. 229
tilities simultaneously, the result was a struggle ter-
minating in the discomfiture of the defeated party.
Omnium vincit omnia. At the siege of Troy, the Tro-
jans became involved in active warfare with the
Greeks, the latter being the adversaries of their oppo-
nents, and though either side used their weapons
against the other side, victory finally perched upon
the banners of the conqueror, and produced the gene-
ral effect of sIg transit gloria mundi. The Troy Trib-
une suppressed all mention of McClellan in its ac-
count of this spirited affair. The dreadful struggle of
Argentium was commenced by the attack of one host
upon its antagonists, and raged bitterly, until a cessa-
tion of hostilities found the victors holding an advan-
tage over the defeated. Burnside's division was not
engaged. In the awful affair of Koncesvalles, the
myrmidons of Charlemagne and the hirelings of Spain
committed a breach of the peace by prosecuting a
mutual affray, resulting in the overthrow of the legions
which were principally overcome, and an advantcige
for the brigades chiefly entitled to the victory. Mhil
It will be perceived, my boy, that the army of the
Potomac was engaged in none of those celebrated
contests, as they did not all take place in the same
week. We make much better time, my boy, than the
I told you in my last, that the celebrated Southern
Confederacy had courted inevitable destruction by
marching madly into Accomac at the very moment
when the victorious Mackerel Brigade was marching
out and before I proceed further with the tale of in-
ORPHEUS C. KERR PAPERS.
vasion, I must }>ause to relate the strange episode of
Spurioso Grimaldi, my boy, superintended the emi-
gration from Italy to this country of a liand-organ
that was banished for playing revolutionary tunes
some time ago, and on arriving upon our shores pro-
ceeded immediately to don a red shirt, and plan revo-
lutions for the coming fall and winter seasons. Upon
the breaking out of the war he enlisted three volun-
teers under his banner from the chorus of the Academy
of Music; but it was not until the recent occupation
of Accomac that he attempted to put his first revolu-
tionary scheme into operation. Then, indeed, he
armed his three divisions with three George Law
muskets, and having gained the borders of suffering
Accomac, he issued the following :
Accomackians ! How are you to day ? This is, in-
deed, a pleasant morning, and the crops look well.
Accumackian?, arise ! For years you have been the
terror of all strangers stopping at your hotels. The
accommodations you offer, taken into consideration
with the prices you charge, are sufficient to appal the
world ! Arise ! Remember Waterloo, and Wagram,
and Bull Run, and other battles in which you took no
active part. Now ! Right away ! Hey ?
SECOND SERIES. 231
As tlie Union, element still lives in Accomac, my
boy, and wishes nothing done to disturb the neighbor-
hood, he could not but deem Mr. Grimaldi's move-
ment ill advised, and issued the following respon-
S. Grimaldi, at the head of an army of three equip-
ped and disciplined troops, calls the Accomackians to
arms. This is scarcely the time for such a call, and
the army of liberation is scarcely adequate to the en-
terprise proposed. Some disaster might occur should
an army of three equipped and disciplined troops at-
tack a force of twenty thousand, under Stonewall
Jackson, at this present crisis. Therefore, let Acco-
mac rest in peace, and continue to keep a hotel.
Union L. Lament.
These proceedings caused great excitement down at
Paris and Loudon, my boy, and the excellent and in-
dependent journals of those places proceeded at once
to publish several yards of profound editorial on the
probable convulsion of the earth's surface, in conse-
quence of S. Grimaldi-s revolutionary proceedings.-
*'The entire habitable universe," said the Paris P^^-
cher, " appears on the verge of terrible upheavings,
and the army of S. Grimaldi seems destined to work
an entire change in the economy of the creation, and
oblige the North and South Poles to change places
232 ORPHEUS C. KEKR PAPERS.
Xot to be outdone, the Loudon Tumller issued an
extra, composed entirely of auction advertisements
and an excited editorial : " The black cloud so long
brooding over the shrinking countenance of upturned
nature seems at length prepared to vomit its horrid
flames over the entire surface of animated humanity.
S. Grimaldi, who is now marching on Accomac, is not
unlikely to prove the instrument of this earth-rending
explosion. The unholy American rebellion dwindles
to insignificant nothingness in comparison with this
So Grimaldi marshaled his three divisions, my boy,
and having marched upon Accomac, was promptly ar-
rested by the police and incarcerated to await an ex-
amination. So much for the episode of Spurioso Gri-
Turning from events which have a deeper interest
for Europe than for our own victorious but distracted
country, let me cheer and improve your mind, my
boy, with some account of the recent glorious victo-
lies around Accomac, wherein the fearless and un-
wounded Mackerel Brigade acquired another coat of
glory, making the third this season.
It was Tuesday morn, when Captain Samyule Sa-
mith of the advance guard, having satisfied himself
that the Brigade was about to achieve its crowning
victory, concluded that the time for expiring after the
manner of General Wolfe at Quebec had arrived at
last. The battle had already commenced, my boy,
and a squad of evil-minded Confederacies were in full
retreat after the Mackerel pickets, when Samyule
hastily fell upon his back, and beckoned for the artist
SECOND SERIES. 233
of Frank Leslie's Illustrated paper, motioned for the
nearest reporter to"take out his note-book, drew a lock
of red hair from his bosom and kissed it, waved his
left hand feebly toward his country's standard, and,
says he : ^' Tete d'Armee ! I die for the old fla— "
" Stop !" shrieked a Mackerel, dashing frantically
to his side at this instant. '' The Anatomical Cavalry,
which is ordered to charge the foe, wishes to know if
it shall take its horses along."
Up sprang Samyule, and says he :
'' Teil the horsemen to take everything but their
trunks with them, and not to stay more than a week.
I really believe," says Samyule in a great passion— ''I
really believe the artillery will be wanting to know
next if they'd better load before firing."
Just at this time, my boy, the Conic Section of the
Mackerel Brigade, under Captain Yilliam Brown,
came charging toward the spot with fixed bayonets,
their gallant leader waving his sword, Escalibar, over
his head, and calling on his troops to lead on to vic-
tory. Forward they went like mad, rushing past us
in swift fury, and composing the heaviest visitation of
red noses ever yet launched upon a foe. To be sure,
no foe was visible in the immediate line of their
charge ; but as they happened to be going down a
pretty steep hill at the time, it was quite possible that
they might meet some adversaries before they could
Fired by the sight. Captain Samyule Sa-mith flew
to take command of a company of Mackerels, who
were busily firing their muskets at some Confederacies
not more than two miles distant ; and having placed
234 ORPHEUS C. KERR PAPERS.
himself at the head thereof, was about to proceed in
pursuit of warlike adventures, when he caught sight
of a bodj of men, followed by another body of men,
moving along in the valley below him.
" Hem 1" says Samyule, ponderingly, " what is this
sight mine eyes behold?"
*' Oh " says a sergeant beside him, " that's the 'No.
3 army of the Confederacy, escorting some prisoners
which they have just taken at Harper's Ferry."
Samyule regarded the spectacle attentively for a
moment, and says he : " Well, there's only one thing
more I want to know about it. I want to know," says
Samyule thoughtfully, " which of them two bodies of
infantry is the army, and whicli is the prisoners ?"
Was there the tiniest, wee-ist, smallest fragment of
sarcasm in his speech ? Find out for yourself, my
boy— find out for yourself.
It was shortly after this remark, and while the
Orange County Howitzers were raining a tempest of
shot and shell at everything but the enemy, that a
small bit of shrapnell fell near Samyule's feet, and
ao-aiu reminded him of his latter end. iSToting that
he was observed by those around him, my boy, and
that the surroundings of the scene were picturesque,
he uttered a hollow groan and fell prone to the earth.
Then picking up the bit of shrapnell, and laying it
upon his heart, he kicked once, and says he :
"Is it almost morning, mother ? Hurra for the old
*' Forward with Company 2, immediately," thun-
dered a messenger who at this moment came tearing
SECOND SERIES. 235
to the spot. "The Confederacy lias flanked the Conic
Section, and is trying to escape."
Preferrin<r to defer death itself rather than see his
beloved country outwitted by the rebels, Captain
Saniyule Sa-mith darted swiftly to his feet at the word,
and instaneously led Company 2 down the hill at
double-quick. I followed him half-way, my boy, and
then turned off into a cross road, where I found Cap-
tain Yilliam Brown striving to get a portion of the
devoted Conic Section into a straight line by ranging
it against a fence. Yilliam ceased his labors when he
saw me approaching, and says he :
" Here's conquering beings for you. Ah !" sajs
Yilliam, proudly, "I sent these invincible beings on
a bayonet charge just now, and they have all come
back without their mnskets."
"What did they do with them?" says I.
" Left them sticking in the foe," says Yilliam, ex-
"Are you sure of that, my Alcibiades?" says I,
" Why," says Yilliam, confidentially, " they didn't
bring a single one back with them, and of course they
must have left them sticking into the paralyzed Con-
If Yilliam could draw a checque as easily as he can
draw an inference, my boy, he might paper the out-
side of the universe with ten dollar bills and have
enough fifties left to make a very deep border.
Leaving the decimated corjjs to reorganize, I has-
tened down the hill again, and arrived at the bottom
only to find a group of reporters and Mackerels
236 ORPHEUS C. KERR PAPERS.
surrounding a manly prostrate form. Company 2 had
just succeeded in routing some Conlederacies from a
melon-patch, and Captain Samyule Sa-mith was im-
proving the opportunity to expire once more in an
Lifting his feeble head when he s.iw me, and pulling
a small flag a little further out of a side-pocket in his
coat, the perishing warrior smiled half way down his
chin, and says he :
" I still live ! All hail to the old fla— "
" One moment, if you please !" shouted Colonel
AYobert Wobinson, breaking through the group. —
*' Could you make it convenient to pay me that dollar
you owe me, Samyule?"
Samyule arose deliberately to his feet again, my
boy, wearing upon his countenance the most awful
expression I ever saw upon a human face.
" Well," says Samyule, furiously, " I've tried to die
for my country three times to-day, and never got
further than the old fla — ! There is such vulgarity
in them which incessantly surrounds me," says Sam-
yule, bitterly, " that they won't even let me die in
Here a Mackerel chap sniffed differentially, and
says he : " But you was trying to die in war, capting."
There was something so inhuman in the idea of a
man making a joke on such a serious occasion, as that,
my boy, that the entire party was struck dumb with
horror ; and one of the spectators retired precipitately
behind a tree, where I immediately heard him laugh-
ing wildly with joy over the thought that it was not
SECOND SERIES. 237
himself wlio had been guilty of such a hideous
It would be useless for me to spend more time in
showing how the battle raged to a victorious conclu-
sion, leaving the Mackerel Brigade in triumphant
possession of the ground it occupied at the outset, and
the Confederacy rooted to the spot it held from the
Scarcely had the strife been finished half an hour,
when the popular General of the Mackerel Brigade
arrived to direct all the movements in person, and to
gain some knowledge of the victories he had just won.
Accompanying him was the political chap from N'ew
Haven, who at once proceeded to congratulate the
troops and address them on the subject of the next
*'My brothers in arms," says he, with fond familiar-
ity, " having done our duty as patriots, let us proceed
to ballot for President of the United States in 1865.
Need I say that our victorious general is the man ?"
Truly, my boy, we shall have little difficulty in
selecting a chief magistrate next term, when there is
such a General longing for the nomination.
Orpheus C. Kerr.
SHOWING HOW THE PRESIDENT AND THE GENERAL OF THE MACK-
EREL BRIGADE ISSUED GREAT EMANCIPATION PROCLAMATIONS,
AND HOW THE CHAPLAIN WROTE A RADICAL POEM.
Washington, D. C, September 27th, 1862.
" John Brown's body," wliicli has been '* marching
on " for some time past, my boy, being thus consid-
erably in advance of om* strictly Constitutional Army,
has at length made a great strategic movement, and
evoked the following promissory note from our Honest
Old Abe: ^
Colorless Domicil, Sept. 22d, 1862.
" ITinety days after date I promise to pay the South-
ern Confederacy, or order, the full amount of its de-
" $ Emancipation, H. O. Abe."
The morning after this little settlement was made,
my boy, I met the conservative Kentucky chap on
Pennsylvania avenue, and was greatly edified by his
high-minded remarks on the subject. "Having re-
cently disposed of ny attached contrabands to good
SECOND SERIES. 239
advantage," says he, sagely, ^* I am now deeply con-
vinced that my brother-in-law, the Southern Confed-
eracy, has brought this dispensation upon himself. I
have said all along that it would be so at last," says
the genial Kentucky chap, casting another glance at
the score of a recent game of Euchre which he held
in his hand. " I have said all along that it would be
so at last, and I am still disposed to sustain the Ad-
ministration and crush the Black Republicans."
When I remembered the sentiments held by this
accommodating chap only about a week ago, my boy,
I could not but feel that he had made a remarkably
sudden revolution on the axes he had to grind ; and
as there was a pleasing spice of human audacity in his
easy way of suiting his style to the political demands
of the moment, I was strongly reminded of a chap I
once knew in the Sixth Ward.
He was a young chap of gorgeous vest-pattern, and
one Sunday afternoon he went out riding with another
sprightly young chap, who was accompanied by his
plighted pink bonnet. They were riding joyously
along in their hired vehicle, my boy, pleasantly dis-
cussing the merits of Eighty's new foreman, and other
subjects equally well calculated to entertain and im-
prove the fond female mind, when, as they turned a
sharp corner, there loomed up, at some distance ahead,
a house bearing a sign reading :
OATS FOR SALE HERE.
24:0 OKPHEUS C. KEEE PAPERS.
No sooner did the spirited li very-horse observe this
dangerous sign, my boy, than he dashed toward it in
a manner worthy of my own gothic steed, the architec-
tural Pegasus ; and as tliere happened to be a few
stones in the way, the two chaps and the pink bonnet
were presently shot into the surrounding atmosphere
without regard to the character of the day. While the
excited quadruped went on with the two fore-wheels
of the vehicle for the purpose of reading the sign
nearer by, the chap of the gorgeous vest-pattern an-
nounced liis safe arrival in a sand-bank by the appro-
priate and clieery cry of "Fire! fire! fire!" and the
other chap and the pink bonnet warbled hasty thanks-
givings in the bosom of a romantic ditch. How they
finally caught the spirited livery horse, and induced
bim to come back to the city again by making a copy
of the sign on a bit of paper, and placing it in his
mouth, and how they ultimately reached home, you
must imagine. But in about a week after, the unnat-
ural livery-stable keeper brought suit against the smit-
ten chap for tlie two hind-wheels of his wagon ; and
when the young chap of gorgeous vest-pattern was
put upon the stand to prove that the catastrophe was
not the driver's fault, he winked agreeably at the peo-
ple, and says he : " My friend and assoshate exerted
hisself visibly to subdue the fiery old oat-mill. As it
was, his brains was nearly dashed out, his neck-tie was
sprained, and hQ found his watch wound up.^'^
Here the livery lawyer thought he had the friendly
chap in a tight place, and says he :
" You say that by being thrown from the wagon so
violently, the defendant's watch was wound up. Per-
SECOND SERIES. 241
haps you will inform the court how such a strange
phenomenon could occur ?"
The young chap merely paused long enough to
make another desperate attempt to reconcile the bot-
tom-edge of his Avaistcoat to the top-edge of his inex-
])ressibles, and says he, with a fine smile :
'^ Wliy, it was easy enough for his watch to be
wound up by it, my covey ; because he turned three
times in the air before he lit.'"
Accommodating conservative chaps, my boy, though
momentarily thrown out of their reckoning, by reason
of sudden proceedings caused by the latest signs of
the times, have a happy aptitude for turning-about as
often as may seem necessary, before alighting on a
The Mackerel chaplain, who came up from Harper's
Ferry on Mondayafternoon, was delighted with H. O.
Abe's promissory note, and considers that old John
Brown is at last
God's scales of Justice hang between
The deed Unjust and the end Unseen,
And the sparrow's fall in the one is weighed
By the Lord's own Hand in the other laid.
In the prairie path to our Sun-set gate,
In the flow'ring heart of a new-born State,
Are the hopes of an old man's waning years,
'Neath headstones worn by an old man's tears.
242 ORPHEUS C. KEEE PAPERS.
When the bright sun sinks in the rose-lipped West,
His last red ray is the headstone's crest ;
And the mounds he laves in a crimson flood
Are a Soldier's wealth baptized in blood 1
Do ye ask who reared those headstones there,
And crowned with thorns a sire's gray hair ?
And by whom the Land's great debt was paid
To the Soldier old, in the graves they made ?
Shrink, Pity ! shrink, at the question dire ;
And, Honor, burn in a blush of fire !
Turn, Angel, turn from the page thine eyes,
Or the Sin, once written, never dies !
They were men of the Land he had fought to save
From a foreign foe that had crossed the wave.
When his sun-lit youth was a martial song.
And shook a throne as it swelled along.
They were sons of the clime whose soft, warm breath
Is the soul of earth, and a life in death ;
Where the Summer dreams on the couch of Spring,
And the songs of birds through the whole year ring ;
Where the falling leaf is the cup that grew
To catch the gems of the new leafs dew.
And the winds that through the vine-leaves creep
Are the sighs of Time in a pleasant sleep.
SECOND SERIES. 243
But there lurked a taint in the clime so blest,
Like a serpent coiled in a ring-dove's nest,
And the human sounds to the ear it gave
Were the clank of chains on a low-browed Slave I
The Soldier old at his sentry-post,
Where the sun's last trail of light is lost,
Beheld the shame of the Land he loved,
And the old, old love in his bosom moved.
He cried to the land, Beware ! Beware
Of the symboled Curse in the Bondman there !
And a prophet's soul in fire came down
To live in the voice of old John Brown.
He cried ; and the ingrate answer came
In words of steel from a tongue of flame ;
They dyed his hearth in the blood of kin,
And his dear ones fell for the Nation's Sin !
O, matchless deed ! that a fiend might scorn,
0, deed of shame ! for a world to mourn ;
A Soldier's pay in his blood most dear,
And a land to mock at a Father's tear I
Is't strange that the tranquil soul of age
Was turned to strife in a madman's rage ?
Is't strange that the cry of blood did seem
Like the roll of drums in a martial dream ?
244 ORPHEUS C. KERR PAPERS.
Is't strange the clank of the Helot's chain
Should drive the Wrong to the old man's brain,
To fire his heart with a santon's zeal,
And mate his arm to the Soldier's steel 1
The bane of Wrong to its depth had gone,
And the sword of Right from its sheath was drawn ;
But the cabined Slave heard not his cry,
And the old man armed him but to die.
Ye may call him Mad, that he did not quail
When his stout blade broke on the unblest mail ;
Ye may call him Mad, that he struck alone,
And made the land's dark Curse his own ;
But the Eye of God looked down and saw
A just life lost by an unjust law ;
And black was the day with Grod's own frown
When the Southern Cross was a martyr's Crown I
Apostate clime I the blood then shed.
Fell thick with vengeance on thy head.
To weigh it down 'neath the coming rod
When thy red right hand should be stretched to Grod.
Behold the price of the life ye took ;
At the death ye gave 'twas a world that shook ;
And the despot deed that one heart broke,
From their slavish sleep a Million woke !
SECOND SERIES. 245
Not all alone did the victim fall,
Whose wrongs first brought him to your thrall ;
The old man played a Nation's part,
And ye struck your blow at a Nation's heart '
The freemen-host is at your door,
And a Voice goes forth with a stern " No More !"
To the deadly Curse, whose swift redeem
Was the visioned thought of John Brown's dream.
To the Country's Wrong, and the Country's stain,
It shall prove as the scythe to the yielding grain ;
And the dauntless pow'r to spread it forth,
Is the free-born soul of the chainless North.
From the East, and West, and North they come,
To the bugle's call and the roll of drum ;
And a form walks viewless by their side —
A form that was born when the Old Man died !
The Soldier old in his grave may rest.
Afar with his dead in the prairie West ;
But a red ray falls on the headstone there.
Like a God's reply to a Soldier's pray'r.
He may sleep in peace 'neath the greenwood pall,
For the land's great heart hath heard his call ;
And a people's Will and a people's Might,
Shall right the Wrong and proclaim the Right.
24:6 OEPHrEus c. kerr papers.
The foe may howl at the fiat just,
And gnash his fangs in the trodden dust;
But the battle leaves his bark a wreck,
And the Freeman's heel is on his neck.
Not all in vain is the lesson taught,
That a great soul's Dream is the world's New Thought ;
And the Scafi'old marked with a death sublime
Is the Throne ordained for the coming time.
The chaplain runs as naturally to poetry, my boy,
as a water-melon does to seed, and his muse is apt to
be — alas ! what a melancholy one !
In my last epistle, I was somewhat hyperbolical
when I meant to be metaphorical, as some of the older
writers were allegorical when they meant to be cate-
gorical. I told you, my boy, that we had cornered the
prudish Confederacy in Accomac, and "thrown our
arms around her." Your natural ignorance will de-
mand an explanation ; and I deem it fit to say, that
by the phrase " thrown our arms around her," I meant
to say that certain Mackerel regiments, in furtherance
of the profound strategy of the General of the Mack-
erel Brigade had thrown their arms away, on every
side of the entrapped Confederacy. It was believed
that the Confederacy was perfectly safe for imme-
diate capture, my boy ; but upon the discovery that
the fords of AUkwyet Riyer, in the rear of Accomac,
where tlie Confederacy could cross, were adjoining
each, other, and extended from the source of the river
SECOND SEKIE^. 247
to its month, it was deemed proper to let the Con-
federacy court farther ruination by retiring in that
direction. Hence, whilst the watchful Conic section
took a brief nap, the Anatomical Cavalry was sent
rapidly in front of the disgracefully retreating Con-
federacy to clear the road for it to the river, and
then telegraph the news of the great victory to all the
excellent morning journals.
It was another splendid stroke of profound strategy,
my boy, and would have crowned the idolized Gene-
ral of the Mackerel Brigade with new laurels, had
lie not been too bashfully modest to understand it
Finding, however, that it seemed to be better than
something worse, he told his staff a small story to
clear his throat, and then unfurled the following
I, the General of the Mackerel Brigade, next Presi-
dent of the United States of America, and Command-
er-in-Chief of the Mackerel Army and superior im-
proved iron-plated squadron, do hereby swear, that on
this occasion, as in a previous instance, the war will
be prosecuted for the object of practically maintaining
the Constitution forever destroyed, and restoring
friendly relations between the sections and States in-
exorably alienated ; that it is my practical purpose to
suggest, at the next orderly meeting of the Mackerel
Brigade, a practical offer of pecuniary compensation
for the slaves of the so-called Border States which
have refrained, through patriotic fear, from waging
2iS ORPHEUS C. KERR PAPERS.
unnatural hostilities with the United States of Ame-
rica and my practical self. Gradual Emancipation
having thus set in, as far as those States are concern-
ed, either voluntarilj, or by virtue of a superior dis-
cretion, persons of African descent will again be pri-
vileged, or voluntarily compelled to colonize in Kova
Zembla, where bear hunting is still in fall bloom ;
that on the first day of April, in the year of our Lord
one thousand eight hundred and sixty-three, all per-
sons held as slaves by what is then known as the ruins
of the Southern Confederacy, shall be then, thence,
thenceforward and forever free, if they choose to con-
sider themselves so, and are able to achieve their in-
dependence ; that on the aforesaid first of April, the
General of the Mackerel Brigade will designate the
States, or parts of States, which have rendered this
proclamation nugatory, by returning involuntarily,
and by force of our arras, to their allegiance, invit-
ino: them to elect members of Congress, boarders at
Wiliard's and Senators as usual, the same as though
their somewhat-prolonged rebellion against the United
States of America had been a rather meritorious ar-
rangement, entitling them to more than ordinary con-
And I do hereby respectfully request all officers to
refrain in future from paying the traveling expenses
of persons of African descent sent by tliem to their
revolted masters after a term of trench service, as
there don't appear to be any common-sense in such
And the General of the Mackerel Brio-rade will fur-
ther recommend, that all citizens of the United States
SECOND SERIES. 249
remaining loyal now, or who may become loyal, vol-
untarily or otherwise, at any period of the world's his-
tory, be fully compensated for all losses sustained by
the United States, including the loss of memory or
In witness whereof, behold the signature and seal
General of the Mackerel Brigade.
While I am compelled to admit, mj?- boy, that I do
not exactly understand by what authority the General
of the Mackerel Brigade is empowered to issue this
Proclamation ; and that some of its clauses — particu-
larly the last — strike me as being somewhat muddled,
I yet regard it as at least a faint evidence that the tre-
mendous farce in which we have so long been playing
such bloody parts is at last coming to an end.
And since the farce seems drawing to a close, per-
haps your farcical Orpheus C Kerr could select no
fitter time than this to withdraw with grace from the
As this thought occurs to me, my boy, I look up,
and behold a couple of our brigadiers a few paces off,
with only two tumblers between them. Their faces
are expressionless. I have seen apple-dumplings with
more expression, especially when dressed with sauce.
It is impossible, my boy, that any wise thing should
enter into the heads of our brass-buttoned generals
under any possible circumstances ; and with heavy
heart, I acknowledge the conviction that I must still
rush the quill.
Orpheus C. Kerr.
REPORTING THE LATEST SMALL STORY FROM " HONEST ABE," AND
DESCRIBING THE MOST MERCENARY BAYONET CHARGE ON RE-
Washixgtok, D. C, October 4th, 1862.
Our Honest Abe, my boy, may lack these brilliant
qualities which in the great legislator may constitute
either the live-oak sceptre of true patriotism or the
dexter finger of refined roguery, as the genius of the
age pivots on honesty or diplomacy ; but his nature
has all the sterling characteristics of the heartiest man-
hood about it, and tliere is a smiling sun in his com-
position which never sets. That he is in his anecdo-
tage, my boy, is a fact
" "Which nobody can deny ;
Or, if they do, they lie!"
yet even his anecdotes have that simple sunlight in
them which is, perhaps, a greater boon to tlie high
place of a nation in the dark hour, than the most wierd
and perpetual haze of crafty w^isdom could be.
There was a dignified chap here from 'New York on
Monday ; a chap who has invented many political
conventions in his time, and came here for the special
SECOND SEKIES. 251
purpose of learning everything whatsoever concerning
the present comparative inactivity of the able-bodied
The Mackerel Brigade, my boy, has done little more
than skirmish on the festive borders of the well-known
Southern Confederacy since the great metaphysical
victory in which it gained such applause and lost a
few muskets, and the dignified convention chap called
upon the Honest Abe to learn the meaning of the pre-
Rumor states that it was the Plonest Abe's hour of
fragmentary leisure when this inquiring chap per-
forated the White House ; and that he was sittinof
with his boots on the window-sill, carving a pine tooth-
pick from a vagrant chip.
" Mr. President," says the dignified chap, aflfably,
'-'" such is the agony of the public mind in consequence
of the present uncertainty in military aflfairs that I feel
it my duty, as a humble portion of that Mind, to
respectfully request of you some information as to the
reason for the cotemporary Mackerel inactivity."
" Hem !" says the Honest Abe, combing his locks
with his right hand, and placing a small bit of the
chip in the right corner of his Etruscan mouth : ^'Per-
haps I cannot better answer your question, neighbor,
than by relating a small tale :
"There was a man out in Iowa who owned a largo
farm, on which he raised everything but the interest
of his purchase-money, and it cost him so little to send
his crops to the market that he was all the time wish-
ing he could find the crops to send. ISTow, this man
was very tenacious of his rights," says the Honest
252 ORPHEUS C. KERR PAPERS.
Abe, putting the argument with his jack-knife — "he
was very tenacious of his rights ; and when a squatter-
sovereign from Missouri came and squatted right on
one of his best pieces of land, he determined to whip
tliat squatter-sovereign within an inch of his life, and
then send him trooping. So he goes down one day to
where the squatter had run up a shingle house," says
the Honest Abe, brushing a chip from his rigtit knee,
"he goes down there, and says he to the squatter : ' If
you don't make tracks from here in twenty -four hours,
you varmint, I'll make you smell thunder and see
chain-lightnin'.' The squatter threw away the axe
with which he was thumping down a maple log for a
door-post, and says he : ' This is a free country,
stranger ; and if you'll come to a place where the
grass is thick enough to make a tidy tumble, we'll
have it out at once.' This put the old man's dander
right up," says the Honest Abe, pulling down his vest ;
" this put his dander right up, and says he : ' Grass be
darned ! Here's a spot of ground as bare as the top
of Governor Chase's head, and I'll jest trouble 3'ou —
y' old varmint you — to find how soft it is for a night's
lodgings.' After this speech there was no more to be
said ; so the two geniuses repaired to the bare spot,
and squared away at each other like all possest. The
old man was great on the science of the thing," says
the Honest Abe, using the toe of one boot as a boot-
jack to pull the other half-way off — "the old man was
great on the science of boxing ; but the squatter had
the muscle, and in about two winks the old 'un was
packing the gravel. Up he got again, very ricketty
in the shoulder-blades, and came to call like a grizzly
SECOND SERIES. 253
in bee-time, striking out with a bang up science, and
would have triumphed gloriously if he hadn't sud-
denly gone to gravel again, with all his baggage. On
this occasion, he righted with both his elbows out of
joint, and says he : ' You're as good as chawed up — y'
old varmint, you — but I'll come back here next spring,
and have it out with you on this same spot.' The
squatter agreed to that, and they parted for the time.
*' E'ow the story of this drawn-fight got abroad, you
see," says the Honest Abe, working the blade of his
jack-knife with hia thumb — "it got abroad; and one
day a neighbor went to the old 'un, and says he :
^ There's one thing about that big fight of yours, Uncle
Billy, I can't understand. What made you put off the
end of the show till next spring?'
" ' Have you seen the cantankerous spot where we
fit?' says the old -"un, moving his shoulders uneasily.
" ' Truelie,' says the neighbor.
" 'Well,' s.'.ys the old 'un, craftily, 'I'm just wait-
ing till that tliar spot has a trifle of grass on it.^ "
At the conclusion of this natural little narrative, my
boy, the dignified conventional chap hurried from the
White House scratching his head : and I really believe,
my boy — I really believe, that his sensitive soul de-
tected an analogy not gushingly flattering to national
strategy and the President of the United States for
Soon after hearing of this, I niet him at Willard's,
and says I: "Well, my sagacious Mirabeau, what is
your final opinion of our Honest Abe?"
He merely paused long enough to swear at a button
which happened to burst from the neck-band of his
264 0EHPEU3 C. KERK PAPERS.
shirt just then, and says he : "Ihe Honest Abe is a
well-meaning Executive, enough. He's a well-mean-
ing Executive," says the dignified chap, with an air
of shghtly-irritated good-nature ; '• but I wish he'd do
something to save his country, instead of telling small
tales all the time."
Our President is an honest man, my boy, and the
glass in his spectacles isn't exactly made of the paper
they print telegrams upon.
Learning that the Mackerel Brigade was still awaiting
abject peace propositions from the exhausted Confed-
eracy, on the borders of Accomac, I scaled the outer
walls of my Gothic steed, Pegasus, on Wednesday,
and sped thither on the metaphorical wings of retarded
lightning. A wisp of hay was clinging to the wiry
mane of the architectural animal, my boy, and this I
used to delude the spirited steed from making those
sudden stops in which he invariably indulges when-
ever a passing acquaintance hails us with the familiar
salutation of "Hey! — where are you bound?" The
charger has evidently a confused idea of the word
" Hey," my bo}^
Upon gaining the outskirts of Accomac, I met Com-
pany 3, Eegiment 5, Mackerel Brigade, just coming
out to make a bayonet-charge upon one of the Confed-
eracy's earthworks not far away. I might have let the
warriors pass by unheeded, my boy, as I was deeply
ruminating upon strategy ; but as they came nearer, I
noticed among them a file of red noses dragging along
a Mackerel, who was tearing and groaning like a mad-
man. In fact, the chap became so violent just then,
SECOND SERIES. 265
that Captain Yilliam Brown precipitately dropped liis
canteen and halted the company.
I looked at the devoted and nearly-sober beings
clustered about the struggling chap, and says I :
*' Plas mutiny reared his horrid front, my veterans ?
What ails our gymnastic friend?"
A Mackerel, largely patched in several departments
of his attire, shaded his voice with a crab-like hand,
and says he : " That is Jakey Mogs, which got a let-
ter from his virchoose femly just the instant we was
ordered to fix bayonets, and he's gone cracked be-
cause the Captain can't let him leave for home in a
Here the refractory chap burst furiously from those
who were holding him, fell upon his knees before the
captain, and says he, as he cried like a woman : " For
God's sake, Cap, do let me go home just this once, and
I swear to God I won't stay there more than just one
minnit 1 My old woman wrote this herself (tearing the
letter from his ragged breast), and she says our little
Tom is dying. He's a dying — O good Lord ! it's too
much ! Please let me go, my dear, good Cap, and I
won't be gone an hour ; and I'll bring you back the
pootiest little bull-tarrier you ever see ; and you can
shoot me for desertion — honor bright ! My Tommy's
a-dying, I tell you, and she's wrote for me to come
right away. Just an hour, Cap, for God's sake ! — only
half an hour, and I'll come back and be shot — honor
As the wild words came pouring out of the poor fel-
low's workmg soul, there fell a breathless hush upon
all his comrades ; the line of bayonets seemed to me
256 OKPHEUS C. KERR PAPERS.
to reflect the soft light of the afternoon with a kind of
strange quiver, and though the Captain turned his head
sternly away from the suppliant, there was not that
firmness in the arm circling to his hip which drives
home the sword of the strong.
"Take the being under guard," says Yilliam,
lioarsely ; " for he must go."
At the word, the rude father sprang to his feet, with
a tigerish glare in his eves, dashed the letter to tlie
ground, tore his howie from its sheath ; and as, with
the liowl of a wild beast, he made a furious thrust at
one of those who approached to secure him — Nature
broke in the tempest, and he fell into the arms of a
comrade, in a fit. They sent him back, then, to camp,
and Company 3, Regiment 5, moved forward once
again, as though nothing had happened.
Alas ! my boy, when this whole war is tlie sensitive
nerve of a vast nation, and vibrates a thrill of mortal
agony to a niillion of souls at each jar the very air re-
ceives from a shot, what matter is it if a single heart
I pondered this deeply as I followed Company 3 ;
nor did I heed the affable remarks occasionally volun-
teered by Captain Yilliam Brown until we gained the
edge of the field wherein was located a company of
bushwhacking Confederacies, as was supposed, behind
?i scientific mud-work. Captain Bob Sliorty and Cap-
tain Samyule Sa-mith were already on the ground to
witness the bayonet charge ;. and it was well that they
had provided bits of smoked glass to view it through^
as the glaring brilliancy of the anticipated feat might
have proved hurtful to the naked eye. As I took my
SECOND SEEIES. 257
place with them, my boy, I conld not but admire the
rapidity with which Captain Yilliam Brown kicked
some of his beings into a straight line before the foe's
front, and at the same time addressed them after the
manner of a great commander :
*' Comrades," says Yilliam, his voice quivering finely
with uncontrolhible valor, " the eyes of future centuries
are looking down upon you on this present occasion,
and your distracted country expects you to propel the
gleamy steel. Ah !" says Yilliam, taking another
hasty look at his notes, " the distracted country has
great confidence in bayonet charges, which are quite
valuable on account of their scarcity in this unnatural
war. My fellow beings," says Yilliam, allowing sev-
eral Mackerels to get in front of him, that he mierht
more readily direct their movements, '' we will now
proceed to charge bayonets."
From our point of vantage, we saw that serried host
sweep on, my boy, their movements being exceedingly
rapid for several yards ; when they went slower, and
Captain Samyule Sa-mith eyed them intensely
through his glass, and says he : " It appears to me
that there is temporary inactivity in the ranks,
and I can see some manly heads turned the wrong
Captain Bob Shorty frowned until his left eyebrow
contracted a delicate streak of smoke from his glass,
and says he: ^'You speak like one of feeble mind,
Samyule. The legs, not the head, are the portions of
the human frame to be watched in a baynit charge."
Taught by this remark, I gazed at the nether con-
258 OEPHErs c. kerr papers.
tiiiuations of our country's hope and pride, and m^j^
glass told me that many of them were working in their
sockets as though belonging to wholly irresponsible
parties. Were those devoted men about to change
their base of operations and entrap Stonwall Jackson's
whole force again, without waiting to receive a shot?
It was a moment of dreadful suspense.
Then did the matchless genius of Yilliam Brown
arise to the full demands of the breathless occasion, in
one of those subtle appeals to human nature's great
undercurrent which leads men as children often are
led. In the rear of the Confederacy's work was the
slanting side of a precipitous hill, and to this hill-side
he had secretly dispatched the paymaster of the corj^s^
by a circuitous route, with a package that looked as
though it might contain Treasury l^otes under his arm.
Just at this awful juncture, when the fate of the day
hung by a hair, that paymaster made his appearance
on the hill-side above the mud-work, and put on his
spectacles to make himself more plainly visible.
" Comrades," says Yilliam, pointing to the celestial
figure, ''yonder is the disbursing genius of the
United States of America. Charge baynits, and let
us be paid oflV
Though the whole Confederacy had been in the way
at that moment, my boy, it ^\ould not have delayed
the charge. Forward went Company 3, Eegiment 5,
with mercenary celerity, capturing the hostile work
with great success; and finding therein a Confederate
letter, statino^ that the Confede.iacv could not so far
demean itself as to fiMit a force whose leader had not
been educated at West Point.
SECOND SERIES. 259
There is a point, my boy, leyond which the Con-
federacy cannot hope to offer successful resistance to
our arms, and recent events would seem to indicate
that it is West Point.
Orpheus C. Kerr.
MAKING MENTION OF ANOTHER MEETING OF THE COSMOPOLITAN
CLUB, AT WHICH THE TURKISH AND RUSSIAN MEMBERS READ THEIR
Washington, D. C, October 8th, 1862
At the meeting of the Cosmopolitans last evening,
my boy, N. E. Ottoman, the Turkish chap, related
the tale of
THE SULTAN'S FAYORITE.
" In all Circassia, there was no woman to be com-
pared with Zara, for beauty. Her eyes were like the
stars, her hair was threads of gold, her teeth were
pearls, her complexion more white and pure than the
marble of Patras, and her form was like those of the
houris, whom Allah has locked up in paradise, for the
benefit of all true believers.
" The father of this beautiful girl was a mountain
chieftain, much noted for his physical strength, bravery,
and insatiable avarice. His wife died in giving birth
to Zara, and upon her child he lavished all the affec-
SECOND SERIES. 261
tion which his iron heart could nourish ; but gold
overcame the finer feelings of a parent, and Nemyl
beheld the bud of childhood bursting forth into the
soul-subduing woman with thoughts in which there
was far more speculation than love.
" ' You shall be sold to the Sultan,' said he to her,
* and he will soon become your most devoted slave.
You may make him do what you will, and I shall be-
come respected and rich, as the father.of a Sultan's
*' Zara made no reply to such anticipations ; for,
although she honored the alem penali of mankind,
her affections had lighted upon another object.
" During the war between the Eussians and Circas-
sians, truces of a few days' duration were quite fre-
quent, and at such periods those of both parties who
were upon the plains, intermingled, and spoke words
of peace to each other. On one of these occasions, a
Russian detachment was quartered near the habitation
of Kemyl, and a young officer, who beheld Zara, fell
in love with her at first sight, although be saw nothing
but her form ; for her face was covered.
" Garstoff (for such was his name) made various
attempts to have communication with the insensible
object of his passion ; but, for some days, his efforts
were in vain— the Circassians being very ready to
keep truce with his countrymen, but very jealous,
also, of any attention bestowed upon one of their own
nation. The officer beheld the brief period of peace
fast drawing to an end, and was about to resign his
darling object, when fortune unexpectedly befriended
262 OEPHErs c. kere papees.
" One evening as he was returning to his camp, a
sound of clashing steel fell upon his ear, and, turning
in the direction from whence it came, he observed a
horseman bravely defending himself against the as-
saults of four men in Turkish costume. Swift as light-
ning, his sword flew from his scabbard, and going to
the assistance of the rider, he made two of the assail-
ants bite the dust, while the others took to their heels
and quickly disappeared.
" ' Your assistance was most timely, and I owe my
life to you,' said the horseman, dismounting from his
steed, and peering into the face of his new ally.
" 'I am happy to have been of service to a brave
man,' replied Garstoff, ' but who were those scoun-
" ' I know them not,' answered the other, ' but sup-
pose them to belong to a band of mountain thieves,
who are prowling about the camps in search of plunder.
I perceive, by your uniform, that you are one of our
enemies. But we are at peace now, and as you have
saved my live, I extend the hand of friendship to you.
Come with me to my house, and we will eat salt to-
" ' May I know the name of my new friend ?' asked
" * I am Nemyl, and I put my trust in God.'
" * I cannot refuse your kind invitation,' said Gar-
stoff. And Kemyl remounting his horse, the two set
off at good speed not saying another word until they
arrived at the house of the chieftain. It was a spaci-
ous but rude habitation, and the only attendant who
welcomed the pair was a pretty little girl of scarce
SECOND SERIES. 263
ten years. !N'emyl fastened the horses of himself and
visitor under a low shed, and then proceeded to an
apartment where rdbols^ viands, various fruits, moun-
tain herbs, and large vessels filled with coffee and
eastern wines, were placed upon a table with covers
for three persons.
" ' We sup here,' he said, motioning Garstoff to a
seat beside the board, and taking one himself. ' I
expected to have met one of our chiefs to-night, and
brought him to my house, but those fellows stop-
ped me, and I changed my company. Eat — What is
your name V
" ' Major Garstoff.'
*' A shade passed over the features of Nemyl, at the
sound of that name, and he grasped the hilt of his
scymetar, for he had heard of the officer's attempt to
speak with Zara, and it was only a thought of recent
events that restrained him from rushing upon the bold
barbarian with the fury of a tiger.
" Garstoff beheld the change in his host's manner,
and had grasped his own weapon, to defend himself
from any sudden attack, when a door was opened, and
Zara entered the department, preceded by the little
slave, looking more beautiful than ever.
"The officer was filled with various emotions by her
presence ; for he at once recognised her as the idol of
his heart, and all feelings of anger disappeared at
" ^ This is my child Zara,' said IS^emyl, with affected
indifference. ' The great Sultan has an apartment for
her in his seraglio, and his Aga has already bargained
with me for her purchase.'
264 ORPHEUS C. KEKR PAPERS.
Garstoff watched tlie girl's countenance, while her
father spoke thus, and was delighted to perceive that
she was discomposed by his words; bat resolving to
avoid a quarrel with his entertainer, he replied :
" ' Happy must be the man, whether sultan or re-
negade, who is destined to claim so much beauty for
The suspicions of Xemyl w^ere lulled to sleep by
such disinterested expressions, and he eat and drank
with his visiter, in all good will, while Zara listened
in silence to their conversation. At length, the fumes
of tlie liquors which he had swallowed, mounted to his
brain, and after giving vent to some incoherent oaths,
the Circassian fell upon the floor in a state of insensi-
bility. His visitor was quite astonished by such a
catastrophe ; but as it afforded him an opportunity to
converse with Zara, he rather rejoiced at it.
" ' Fair lady,' said he, * can it indeed be true that
your charms are destined to wither in the Sultan's
" ' It is true, stranger,' answered Zara, in mournful
tones, * the Aga of Soliman, spoke with my father
at Constantinople, and I am to be borne thither soon.'
"'Does such a fate please you, Zara?' asked the
"'KoI' replied the beautiful Circassian, with em-
phasis. 'But it is the will of Allah, and I must
"She arose from her seat, and beckoning for the
attendant, was about to leave the apartment, when
Garstoff, laid his hand upon her arm, and gently
SECOND SERIES. 265
"* Forgive 1113^ rudeness,' he said, with much ear-
nestness ; ^ but, Zara, I cannot behold your sacrifice,
without endeavorinnj to avert it. I am a stransrer to
you ; but you are not a stranger to me ; for 1 have
seen you, when 3'ou thought yourself unobserved, and a
fire has been kindled in my breast, which nothing but
possession of you can ever abate. Tell me to perform
some deed, that I may prove the ardor of my love ;
let me save you from the fearful doom that threatens
"'Stop! Christian,' interrupted the maid; 'I have
neA^er seen your face before, and how can I trust a
stranger '( Go ! or Kemyl shall punish you when he
awakes. I can hear your words no longer.'
** ' Think not that I fear your father, answered Gar-
stofl:', ' though I stand in his house ; yet I will no
longer excite your anger by staying here.'
" He arose, and would have departed, had not the
daughter of Nemyl, placed herself in his way.
" ' What would you do for me ?' she asked hur-
" * 1 would sacrifice my life, if necessary.'
" * That would not help me, Christian. Dare you
appear in the field as a rival to the sultan, for my
"As a rival to ten thousand sultans, for such a
" ' Why do you not hicj/ me^ then V
"The Russian staggered back and turned pale at
the suggestion ; for it reminded him how wholly the
woman was beyond his reach, and filled him with
266 ORPHEUS C. KERB PAPERS.
** ' What sum would do it V be asked.
" ' Five thousand doblas,' answered Zara, compos-
edly; 'the great sultan will g'lVQ four thousand, and
if you o&erjive, my father will surely sell me to you.'
'' ' Alas ! what a curse is poverty !' exclaimed Gar-
stoff, smiting his forehead. 'I have only my paj^, and
it would not amount to that sum in three years. What
shall I do V
" His sorrow evidently affected Zara, and for some
moments they remained silent. At length, her eyes
brightened, and she said in peremptory tones ;
" ' You can bear me away to your own country.'
"'That is true!' ejaculated the Russian, kissing
her willing band in extacy. ' Then indeed have I not
suffered in vain. I will take you to a country where
the sovereign will smile upon you as my bride, and
you shall forget a land where women are sold like
dogs. Bless you for the suggestion, dear Zara, I
thought of it before ; but dared not anticipate so much
happiness. When will you fly with me V
" ' At this hour, two days hence, I will be in the
garden alone !' responded the girl, with a familiar
" ' It is enough !' said Garstoff. ' I will be here
with horses and arms, and morning shall behold you
in the camp of my countrymen. Till then, fare-
"The lovers separated so hastily, because Neinyl
had commenced to move ; Zara going with the mute
attendant to her apartment, and Garstoff departing
for his encampment. When both had disappeared,
ISTemyl arose to his feet, while a dim, but grim smile,
SECOND SERIES. 267
plajed about his lips, and all signs of intoxication
'' ^ Oh, ho !' he muttered, between his set teeth.
^ The son of a dog would rob me of my daughter and
four thousand doblas. I will take good care to be
in the garden two days hence, and the son of Shitan
shall find what it is to rival the sublime sultan. They
thought me drunk with grape juice, but they shall suf-
fer for it. By Allah ! they shall !' and he threw him-
self upon a couch, where he soon fell asleep, to dream
of gold and vengeance.
" The truce was within three days of its expiration
and Garstoff, overjoyed at the success of his impious
design, hastened to prepare for its execution. He pro-
cured horses, assistants, and arms ; and on the night
appointed proceeded towards the house of Nemyl.
When within a short distance of the garden, he dis-
mounted from his horse and leaving that together
with the others provided, in care of a few soldiers
who composed his guard, he drew his sword and
walked cautiously towards the place of rendezvous.
Climbing to the top of the wall, he paused for a mo-
ment to survey the scene beneath ; but all was still as
the grave, and he sprang into the garden. A few
fleecy clouds had hitherto obscured the moon ; but
now she sailed beyond their shade, and by her silver
light the Russian discovered a figure dressed in white,
at a short distance in front of him.
" 'Zara,' he said, in low, distinct tones, going
" ' Christian, I am here,' answered Zara (for she it
was,) and in another moment she was in his arms.
268 OBPHEUS C. KEEK PAPERS.
" ' We must haste away,' said Garstoff, when the
first rapture of their meeting was over, and she hung
upon his arm.
" ' Yes ! jes ! I am afraid JS'emyl has discovered us.
There have been strange men about the house to-day,'
replied Zara, looking timidly about her ; for guilt is
ever suspicious, even in broad day.
"Garstoff said no more, but quickly regained the
wall ; and, drawing forth a rope-ladder from under his
coat threw it over the wall, so that it hung down on
either side, and having fastened it in the middle, de-
scended after Zara. Catching her in his arms, he
darted back ; and, in a few seconds, was standing with
her upon the path.
" ' Whose steps are those V she exclaimed, in ter-
ror, as the sound of advancing footsteps fell upon her
'' * They are my soldiers, dearest,' answered her
lover, applying a whistle to his lips, and blowing
a shrill blast ; although he was himself astonished
that they approached before the signal agreed upon
" ' Draw your sword, captain — we are surprised !'
shouted his followers, as they rode hastily up ; and
almost before the annoyed Garstoff could clasp his
weapon, a troup of fierce Circassians surrounded him,
while another party attacked his soldiers with great
" ' Surrender, dog of a Christian !' shouted Nemyl,
in a voice of thunder.
'' ' Kot while I live !' answered the officer.
" ' Then disarm him, my men ; but harm him not at
SECOND SERIES. 269
your peril !' said the Circassian ; and, after a desper-
ate resistance, Garstoff was made a prisoner, Zara lay
fainting in the arms of two stout mountaineers, and
every Russian soldier bled to death.
" ' To the house with them !' said Nemyl, in his
usual tones, leading the way with an air of triumph.
" Garstoff soon found himself in the apartment where
he had supped with the father of Zara, who now stood
before him as his captor.
" * You have repaid my hospitality with a ven-
geance,' said ]Sremyl.
" ' Beware how you abuse a Russian officer !' he an-
" ' Rememl)er, Christian, the truce expires to-mor-
row, and if I keep you a prisoner until then, you will be
treated as a prisoner of war.'
" ' I know it.'
" ' You are now completely in my power ; and there
is but one feeling that withholds my sword from your
heart. Do you know what feeling that is?'"
" ' Fear I'
" ^ No, Christian devil ! J^emyl knows no such word !
It is gratitude for the preservation of my life towards
my preserver. IFou are free. Depart in peace.'
" ' I honor the nobility of your sentiments,' answered
Garstoff, tilled with admiration of such magnanimity ;
' yet I would willingly yield my life to preserve Zara
from the fate you promise her.'
*' ' Mention not her name. She deserves the bow-
string, instead of the Sultan's embraces,' said Namyl,
" ' Are you then so insensible to '
270 ORPHEUS C. KERR PAPERS.
" ' Will yon give me five thousand doblas for her?
'^ ' A hundred thousand, if I had them !'
" ' But you have them not V
*' ' Alas, no !'
" ^ Then you cannot have Zara. Depart in peace.'
" Garstoff looked frantically about him for a moment
and then rushed from the apartment like one demented.
" ' My friends,' continued Nemyl, turning to the
mountaineers, who stood behind him — ' I wished you
to aid me in recovering a lost treasure, and you drew
your swords for me. My daughter is delivered from
the Christian robber, and six of his soldiers are sent
to Eblis. I gave the dog his life, because he saved
mine, when it was nearly forfeited ; but we shall soon
meet in battle, and then let the Giaour beware ! De-
part in peace, my friends.'
" As I have before stated, Zara fell into a swoon,
immediately after the first appearance of her father,
on the evening of her attempted flight, and was car-
ried to her chamber, unconscious of how the afiPray
resulted. For two days, she was kept a prisoner in
her own apartment, seeing no one but the little mute.
At the end of that period, her father made his appear-
ance, while she slept, and rudely pulled her from the
couch on which she lay.
" ' Holy Prophet, have mercy !" she exclaimed, in
an agony of fear, imagining that he intended to slay
" ' Dress, and prepare to depart !' thundered Nemyl.
* "We must be on the road before day-break.'
Trembling like an aspen, Zara suflfered the attend-
ant to array her, and then asked, with quivering lips —
SECOND SERIES. 271
" * Where do you intend to take me !'
" ' To the Saltan /" exclaimed Neni}'! ; and, as she
sank upon her knees at his feet, lie added, furiously,
*Base girl, you would have covered me with disgrace
by following a Christian dog ; but Allah gave me
strength, and I slew the barbarian in his toils.'
" In silence the girl rose to her feet, and signified
her readiness to depart by a low salaam.
" At the street door stood the litter prepared for her
reception, and Nemyl pushing her into it, drew the
curtains, and gave the signal to the drivers, while he
mounted his horse and accompanied them. On arriv-
ing at the city of the Sultan (which they did after
a tedious journey), Nemyl conveyed his daughter to
the grand bazaar ; for, in fact, he never received an
offer from the Sultan, but spread the report that other
purchasers might present themselves, whose positions
would fail to gratify the desires of his inordinate am-
bition. Xot long had he remained there with the lit-
ter, when the Kislar Aga of Soliman entered the ba-
zaar, and made directly towards him, with long strides.
" 'What animal have you in your litter that you
keep it closed like a cage V asked the Aga.
" ' Your slave will show you that you may judge
of it for yourself,' answered JSTemyl, and drawing the
curtains, disclosed Zara, with tears upon her cheeks.
" The Aga started back in amazement at beholding
such a display of beauty, and all his anger vanished
like snow beneath a sunbeam. lie well knew that the
addition of such an ornament to the Sultan's harem,
through his instrumentality, would add greatly to his
272 OEPHEUS C, KERR PAPERS.
consequence ; and liis satisfaction was so evident, that
ISTemyl beheld it with delight, and — profited by it.
" ' How much gold do you want for the girl V asked
the A.ga, endeavoring to appear indifferent.
" ' Five thousand doblas," answered IlTemly, com-
"'Five thousand doblas! Bismillali ! dare you
laugh at our beards ? That money would buy a dozen
" ' I was offered that by a Eiissian officer,' said the
Oircassiaii, without moving his eyes.
" For a moment the Aga hesitated, but the idea of
selectins: a favorite speedily overcame all his scruples,
and bidding Kemyl follow him with the litter, he pro-
ceeded to a private door of the imperial seraglio, and
gave Zara in charge of two female slaves.
"Thus was the fairest flower of Franquistan placed
in the imperial garden, and he who bad trained it was
soon on his way home, with five thousand doblas in "his
" What pencil could portray the delight of his sub-
lime highness, or what tongue could repeat the lan-
guage of his immaculate lips, when he beheld his
Aga's new purchase.
" * Barek Allah P praise be to God ; ' what an hou-
ri !' he exclaimed, kissing her passionately.
" * She is already a favorite,' said the Aga, and smiled.
" ' She will be a favorite,' said the queen's mother,
" Zara wept, and would not be comforted during the
first few days of her residence at the seraglio ; but
finally the kind words of his sublime highness con-
SECOND SEEIES. 273
quered her obstinacy, and throwing herself at his feet,
she made a full confession of her fondness for Garstoif,
and his vain attempt to carry her away by stratagem.
*' The Sultan was much afflicted by this news, for he
really loved Zara, and was aware, that, should her de-
fection become known, his honor would compel him to
plunge her lifeless body into the Bosphorus.
" ' Aly dear Zara,' he said, encircling her waist with
his arms, ' you have been frank with me, but beware
that you speak of this affair to no one else, or your life
will surely be sacrificed. This Garstoff is dead, and
can now be nothing to you ; do not waste your affec-
tions upon a skeleton ; but let them revert to me, and
Soliman will become tlie slave of your will.'
" In such a manner did the Eefnge of Mankind talk
to the daughter of jSTemyl, until she gradually drew
the veil of forgetfulness over past sorrows, and re-
spected his sublime highness, if she did not love him.
Taking the highest rank in the harem, no wish of liers
remained unanswered ; masters of every art were fur-
nished as her instructors ; subservient slaves were ever
ready to do her bidding, and costly presents of every
description rolled in upon the favorite, from those who
had — axes to grind.
"Each day the Sultan became more deeply in love
with her, and in the same proportion, she became each
day more odious to those, whom, from old age, or
satiety, the magnificent Soliman had quitted for Zara.
Among the most violent enemies of the new favorite,
was the queen mother, who suborned the Kislar Aga
to her will, and through him, maintain (3(1 a ihorougli
system of espionage upon every word and action of the
274: ORPHEUS C. KEEK PAPERS.
object of her hatred; but Zara rendered all her efforts
futile until one day while going abroad, she observed
a person dressed in the janissary uniform, whose form
appeared familiar ; and what was her emotion, when
he turned his face toward her, and discovered the fea-
tures of Garstof r
Here tlie English member interrupted the reader,
and says he :
'^ Good gracious ! I thought that fellow was dead.'
" No, sir," says the Turkish chap ; " you should re-
member that jS'emyl spared his life."
" I don't remember anything about it," says the
British chap, crustily ; *' but I suppose you told that
part of the story when I was asleep. Proceed."
"The Kislar Aga, who stood behind her litter,
noted Zara's emotions and their apparent cause, and
when he returned to the palace, made his instigatress
acquainted with her rival's strange conduct. The
Tvily woman at once perceived that Zara was partially
in her power, and instructed her instrument to watch
the favorite closely, and gain further information.
Meanwhile, their intended victim suffered the pangs
of remorse, and old feelings awakened from their long
sleep, struggled fiercely with the usurping passions ia
SECOND SERIES. 275
" The sight of the Kussian, whom she believed to be
in his grave, made her frantic with sorrow, and she
resolved to speak with him, although by so doing, she
would risk discovery and an io^nominious end.
'•To accomplish her purpose she called upon the
Aga, as he had always appeared devoted to her spe-
cial interests, and, describing the person of her lover,
asked him to carry a billet to Garstoff, and thus gain a
" ' Aga,' she said, with composure, ' yon must find
this man, and ask him if his name is not Garstoff.
Should he start, and answer yes, give him this slip of
paper, and say no more.
" With many vows of fidelity, the Aga received the
billet, and carried it direct to — the queen mother.
" The latter person did not hesitate to open it, and
read as follows :
" ' Garstoff : I have seen you, and would speak
with you. Meet me near the mosque of Omar, to-
morrow, at the tenth hour. Zaka.'
" * She is caught at last,' said the triumphant plot-
ter ; ' but we must let the affair run on, until the Sul-
tan may be convinced by his own eyes of her guilt.'
" Accordingly, the slave departed in search of the
disguised Russian, whom he soon discovered from the
description given him by Zara.
" ' Is not your name Garstoff?' he asked.
*' ' Great heavens ! — yes, it is !' answered the janis-
saVy, in great confusion.
276 OKPHEUS C. KEKR PAPERS.
" *Then here is something for you,' said the Aga ;
and, handing him the billet, turned upon his heel.
" Great was the surprise of Garstoff when he read
the letter; but joy quickly overcame wonder, and he
liastened to procure a suitable disguise for the strange
"At the appointed hour he stood before the mosque,
and presently a muffled figure approached him, whom
his beating heart proclaimed to be the long lost ob-
ject of his adoration. It \va3 indeed Zara, and, in
one moment, they were in each other's arms.
" The Russian hastened to relate his adventures
since they last saw each other, and finished by
" ' I gave up my commission, dearest Zara, to seek
for you, and now that we once more behold each
other, let us never part again. This hated uniform I
assumed to facilitate my search ; it shall be thrown
aside now and forever.'
''Then Zara commenced her narrative, but was
" ' Zara, tell me, for heaven's sake, have you list-
ened to the Sultan's words of love? Are you, are you
— his — slave V gasped Gartstoff, staggering against
" Zara looked to the ground.
" ' I see it all,' he continued, in frantic accents.
' Zara, you are lost ! lost to me forever ! I go to my
death. Zara, a last farewell !' He was about to leave
her, when she caught his arm, and hissed in his ear :
" ' Is this your love that you once boasted of?'
" ' Zara, let me go ; I am almost mad,'
SECOND SERIES. 277
" * And I ain quite mad. Listen to me, faithless
Christian. I beheld jou in the streets when you saw
me not, and have risked honor, life, every thino-, to
come to yon, and be your slave. How could I help
what has passed ? My father — '
" ' Zara, you should have died first.'
"For a time she remained silent, with her head
bowed, and then said, in low tones :
" ' Christian, you are right ; I should, indeed, have
preferred death to my present fate ; but it is too late
now. I will return to ray master ; yet do I hope to
see you once again. Will you not grant me that
'''Once more,' answered Garstoff mechanically.
"'Then come here to-morrow, and you will find a
large chest ; place yourself in it, and two slaves will
will bring you to me. Do you promise V
" ' I do, Zara,' and, in deep sorrow, GarstofiT turned
'"Base dog!' muttered Zara, as she again mufiied
her features, 'you have rejected the daughter of
Nemyl, and she sleeps not while you press the earth.'
" The favorite sped hastily back to the palace, and
entered by a secret door, while the Kislar Aga, who
had concealed himself near her at the mosque, and
witnessed the interview, hastened to the queen mother,
and made his report, when she exclaimed:
" ' Allah be praised ! this Circassian will soon be
under the Bosphorus ; for Zara will meet her gallant,
and his serene highness shall behold himself dis-
" Knowing th - extreme affection entertained for
278 ORPHEUS C. KERR PAPERS.
Zara by Soliman, the cautions woman was wary in
her communication, and did not reveal the whole
matter, until the Sultan's suspicions had been aroused
by her hints. He first ridiculed, tlien listened silently,
then believed; and, finally, agreed to conceal himself
in the Sultana's apartment, and judge for himself.
" He waited until tlie moment of assignation ap-
proached, and was looking upon the unconscious ob-
ject of his gaze with returning confidence, when a
curtain of the apartment was raised, and two negro
slaves entered, bearing a large chest between them.
*' Zara motioned for them to leave it and depart ;
and then raising the lid, Garstoff stepped forth, and
the Sultan uttered an inward groan.
"< Drink this, and it will give you strength,' said
Zara, presenting a goblet of liquor to the janissary.
" Garstoff raised the cup to his lips, and drained it
at a draught; on which the fair Circassian burst into
a fit of hysterical laughter.
" ' Is this a moment for merriment?' asked Garstofi",
" ' Wine makes me merry !' she answered, drinking
from another goblet. ' And now, Christian, do you
know what you came here for V
" ' To see you for the last time.'
'* ' That is true, follower of Isauri — you go not hence
" ' What mean you, woman V exclaimed Garstofi",
starting from his seat with pallid cheeks.
" '^ I mean that you have swallowed poison P scream-
ed Zara, the fire of insanity blazing from her eyes.
SECOND SERIES. ^ 279
'You scorned the daughter of Nemyl, and she has
taken revenge ! Pnij to Isauri — pray to — '
" Garstoif dropped upon tlie floor, a disfigured
corpse, and the Sultan bounded from his place of con-
cealment upon Zara ; but the purple veins of her fore-
head were swelling out like cords, and before he could
speak to her she was — dead /'
" Eeallj," says Yitchisvitch, the Eussiai. member,
drawing a long breath, "there is too much of the
* blood and thunder' style about that story to suit me ;
but here is something more quiet."
And he proceeded, my boy, to make known unto us
THE LITTLE MA:^r IN GREEN.?
"On a clear, cold night in December, Nicholas
Dimitri, a young officer of Cossacks, was walking
slowly through a public street of St. Petersburg, with
a military cloak thrown over his shoulder, and looking
steadfastly to the ground, as though intent upon
some prospect of no ordinary interest. Acquaintances
of all ranks were constantly passing him, but their
silent salutes met no return, and many a surmise was
hazarded as to what his mission was, that it caused
such evident abstraction in one so generally admired
for his flow dhsjprit. Unconscious of attracting atten-
tion, Nicholas strode onwards wrapped in thought,
until he became aware of violent collision with some
280 ORPHEUS 0. KERR PAPERS.
person going in an opposite direction, and almost im-
mediately a hoarse voice exclaimed :
•''What, in the name of all that's good, are you
about? Are not the walks wide enough for both of
us, that you must needs knock a man's breath out of his
body in this way ? By the Admiral's wig ! I've a
mind to return the compliment with my fists, you
'' The officer of Cossacks started involuntarily, as his
reverie was thus broken, and beheld standing before
him a very stout individual, ratJier below the ordinary
height in stature, with iron-grey hair, prominent fea-
tures much embrowned, and clad in a plain green uni-
form, such as was worn by the privates in the army.
The little man stood directly m his path, with an ex-
pression of good natured defiance resting upon his
countenance, and flourishing a short cane in his right
" 'I beg your pard-ni, sii',' said Nicholas, soniesvhat
provoked, ^ but 1 was hardly conscious of being in the
street at all. Allow me to pass, sir, I am in haste.'
He attempted to get by the little gentleman, but that
person had no idea of allowing such a move, and in
the coolest possible manner linked his arm with that
of the impatient officer.
" * It's ray watch now,' he said, with a short laugh,
' and as you don't bunk in just yet, we may as well
be company for each other. I ain't particular about
which way you go, so up with your irons and we'll
" 'I can permit no such familiarities,' replied Ni-
cholas, angrily, attempting to release his arm. ' Are
SECOND SERIES. ** 281
you intoxicated, that you do not perceive I am an of-
ficer? Let go my arm, sir, or I will call the patrol,
and place you under guard.'
" Notwithstanding this threat, the little man still
himg on, and walked boldly beside him with great
" ' Ha ! ha ! you think I belong to the army, Mr.
Officer,' he observed, with much jocularity. 'I know
rather more about the sea, and never tip my cap to
anything less than a frigate captain. But never mind
that. This street should be better lighted, and yet ff
it had been, I should never have known you — don't
you think so ? Now really don't you think the Em-
peror or Czar should pay more attention to lighting
the streets ? I should think the people would grum-
ble about it— don't they V
" Seeing that his new acquaintance was determined
to walk beside him, the officer had resolved to let him
talk without venturing a reply, but this slur upon the
Czar wounded his pride, and he answered impa-
" ' You cannot be a Russian, sir, or you would not
dare speak thus disrespectfully of the greatest, noblest,
and best living sovereign. Wliy should we need more
light, sirrah, when the moon is shining briglitly ? Let
me warn you not to speak this way before others, or
you may receive rough treatment. Every Muscovite
honors and loves the Czar as a father, and a slighter
cause than that just given by you lias cost many a for-
eigner his life in St. Petersburg.'
" As the young man spoke, he seemed to forget his
282 OEPHEUS C. KERR PAPERS.
companion, and yielded his whole soul to the enthu-
siasm of loyal t J.
" ' I like you,' said the little man, heartily.
'' ' Indeed !'
'' ' Yes, and will help you.'
" ' Help me ?' asked ISTicholas, stopping suddenly in
his walk, eyeing his companion with mingled aston-
ishment and suspicion.
" ' I said so. Is there anything extraordinary in
" ' Who are you ?' demanded the officer, sternly.
" 'No matter about that. I am your friend.'
" ' How do I know that V asked Nicholas, still more
" 'I will prove it. You ar6 in love !'
"' Most men are at some periods of their lives.'
" « Yery true, but you are in love 7iow, and the lady
of your affection is far above you in station.'
" ' How in heaven's name do you know this ? Who
are you V exclaimed the officer, completely thrown off
his guard, and staring wildly at his odd companion.
" * It matters not how I know, or who I am. Let it
suffice to say that I do know, and can aid you,' said
the little man, with a more dignified air than he had
before assumed. ' Eestrain your feelings, and merely
answer yes or no, to what I am about to say. You are
loved by the lady ?'
" ' I believe — or, rather, trust so.'
*' ' She is the Countess Walewski V
" ' No.'
" ' Her ward Olinska V
SECOND SERIES. 283
"^ I shall answer no more questions,' said Nicholas,
compressing his lips.
" ' Then, Mr. Officer, I will ask no more questions,
but confine myself strictly to statements. You love
Olinska, and have a rival in Admiral Praxin, who is
favored by the Czar. So strong are your rivaPs
claims that you have no resource save a clandestine
marriage. You are now on your way to the hotel of
the Countess, intending to perfect your plans with her
aid, and baffle the Czar in his designs for the advan-
tage of Admiral Praxin. Don't say a word to me
now, you will receive a message before long. Good
night, Nicholas Dimitri.'
" The little man nodded his head most knowingly,
and fairly ran off, leaving the astounded lover looking
at the moon.
"Nicholas remained perfectly still for some mo-
ments, looking vacantly upward, and then went on his
way, like one who had just awakened from a strange
" ' What can this mean V he asked himself. ' This
man, whom I never saw before, has told me of things
which no mortal save myself should know, and he is
even acquainted with my name. This matter must be
quickly settled, or I shall be placed under arrest, with
no hope for the future.'
"Arriving presently at the door of an aristocratic
mansion, he sent up his card, and was speedily ushered
into an elegant boudoir, where a beautiful and richly-
dressed lady was waiting to receive him. The Countess
Walewski was not a young woman, yet the bloom of
earlier years still lingered on her cheek, and the
284 OEHPEUS C. KEER PAPERS.
sprightly vivacity of girlhood shot forth from her dark
" ^ My dear Nicholas, you are behind time,' she said,
giving her hand to the young officer, and causing
him to take a seat beside her on a velvet couch. ' Lov-
ers are not often tardy in keeping their appointments,
but as I am not the lady, I must excuse you. Upon
my word — I did not observe it before — you look dis-
contented. Nothing has happened, I hope V
" ' Dearest lady, we are betrayed !' answered Nicho.
" ' You are jesting.'
" ' Would to God, I were ! A strange man encoun-
tered me in the street as I came hither — ' and Nicho-
las gave a full account of his interview with the little
man in green.
*' The Countess appeared much alarmed by the nar-
ration, and, for some moments after its conclusion, re-
mained silent, but at length she recovered sufficient
courage to reply,
" ' This is strange indeed — and yet, Nicholas, this
man may be a member of the police, who, as you know,
make themselves masters of our very thoughts. You
say he expressed a desire to assist you, and declared
himself your friend ; he may have some object in this
we know not of — '
" * No living man shall rob me of my prize,' inter-
rupted Nicholas, passionately. ' Olinska will be guided
by me, and before morning we will be far from the
capital. There is no time to lose ; we must hasten to-
wards Moscow this very night. Where is she ? Why
is she not here to meet me V
SECOND SERIES. 285
" ' Restrain your passion ; be prudent, I entreat you,'
exclaimed the Countess, grasping his wrists. ' Olinska
loves you, and you alone ; but I am her guardian, and
she submits to my wishes, as duty bids her. Be your-
self, Xicholas, and avoid any rash action. You cannot
see Olinska to-night.'
" ' Has your ladyship combined with my enemies to
make a madman of me V asked the officer, with great
" ' Have my actions been those of an enemy V res-
ponded the Countess, with a reproachful smile. ' My
dear IN'icholas, I would have spared you a pang, but
you compel me to tell all. My ward is to have an in-
terview w^ith Admiral Praxin to-morrow, by order of
" ' With Admiral Praxin !' exclaimed I^^icholas, start-
ing to his feet.
" ' Such is the truth. I do not believe that Peter
will compel Olinska ; but his command was impera-
tive, and must be obeyed at all risks. Do not fear for
Olinska — she is wholly yours, though a king should ask
her hand. The Admiral can only sue to be rejected,
and after that you must fly.'
" ' Lady, I submit to your wishes,' said ]S"ichola8.
* I honor the Czar, as all Russians should honor him,
but Olinska shall be mine, though he should send a
dozen admirals to thwart me.'
"After some further consultation of a desultory char-
acter, the officer of Cossacks took his leave, and retired
to a bed rendered sleepless by doubts and fears.
" On the following morning, before he had com-
pleted his toilet, a servant entered the apartment to
286 ORPHEUS C. KERli PAPERS.
announce a visitor, followed by a little creature, not
more than three feet in height, dressed in a livery of
blue and silver.
" ' This gentleman desired to speak with you, sir, im-
mediately,' said the grinning servant, pointing to the
new comer, and bowing himself out of the room.
" The minute specimen of humanity said not a word,
but assumed an air of great consequence, and with
much ceremony presented a letter. Nicholas could
not repress a smile at the messenger's grotesque ap-
pearance, but his mirth sobered into surprise when he
read as follows :
" * Nicholas Dimitri : The bearer of this missive is
my servant, who will be of great service to both you
and myself, in events about to transpire. Answer his
questions without hesitation, and rest assured that
Olinska shall be yours, despite the Czar and Admiral
Praxin, or I am much mistaken. I will be present at
the wedding. Your friend,
" '• The Little Man in Green.'
" The young officer droj^ped the note from his hand,
and eyed the dwarf in silent amazement.
" ' Is that your death warrant V asked the latter,
" ' Who wrote this V demanded Nicholas.
" ' My master.'
" ' And who is your master V
" ' The Little Man in Green. Ha ! ha !' laughed the
SECOND SERIES. 287
"^ His name? I must know his name!' exclaimed
" The abbreviated Mercury placed a finger beside
his little nose, in a very knowing manner, at the same
time winking sagaciously.
" ' I can answer no such question,' he said ; * my
master desires to remain incog, at present. My name
is Orloff, and I wish you to answer one inquiry : Does
the ward of the Countess "VValewski have an interview
with Admiral Praxin to-day V
" ' She does.'
" 'That is sufficient ; you will hear from me soon,'
and Orloff fled through the open door, with a speed
" Nicholas called after him in vain, and then called
his servant to dress him, with a vague apprehension of
evil, and a belief that no lover ever had so many to
assist his wooing as himself.
" Olinska, the daughter of a noble Polish family,
was deprived of her parents at an early age, and se-
lected for her guardian the high-minded Countess
Walewski. Her childish years were spent in Warsaw,
the city of her forefathers ; but the Countess was
obliged to remain at St. Petersburg, being a member
of the Czarina's household, and thither she called her
ward, to be presented at court, and drown the memory
of her sorrows in the gaieties of the capital.
" Young, beautiful and unsophisticated, chaperoned
"by an illustrious lady, and reputed to be heiress of
288 ORPHEUS C. KERR PAPERS.
great wealth, the Polish maiden speedily became the
magnet and toast of a brilliant circle, and a prize for
which scores of young nobles contended. But the
heart of Olinska was not to be purchased with titles,
and while the scions of aristocracy knelt vainly at her
feet, she besiowed. her virgin afiections upon Dimitri,
whose silent homage defeated, that of all others, with
its proud, peculiar dignity. Military rank is esteemed
by the Russians as little inferior to that of inheritance ;
yet they acknowledge a difference, and the line drawn
between them by the usages of society cannot be over-
stepped with impunity. The young officer, although
admitted into court circles, was aware of the distance
between himself and the lady in a social sense ; but
the encouragement she gave him, so insensibly drew
them together, that disparity of birth was forgotten,
and love — the great leveller of conditions — reigned
*' However misanthropically a man may express his
indifference to the world's opinion, we are all, more or
less, its most subservient slaves, and although Nicholas
Dimitri assured his idol that the gossip of fashionables
was nothing to him, he deemed it proper to solicit the
kind offices of the Countess, as a go-between ; and ap-
parently visited the guardian, when, in reality, the fair
ward was the object of his intentions.
*• Peter the Great, who, at that period, occupied the
throne of Russia, had an unpleasant habit of reward-
ing his bachelor friends for worthy deeds, with the
hand of some fair maiden of his court ; and, having be-
held the Polish lady, he resolved to bestow her upon
Admiral Praxin, who, though often regarded withsus-
SECOND SERIES. 289
picion by his sovereign, had lately rendered ' the state
good service.' Olinska repulsed the old sailor's ad-
vances with disdain ; but the Czar requested her to
grant him a private interview, and a request from such
a source being synonymous with a command, the lady
felt obliged to grant it.
' " Alone she sat, in a gorgeously furnished apart-
ment, when the Admiral was announced, her sable
locks shading a neck and bosom that rivalled the snow
in their whiteness, and supporting her head with a
hand of nature's choicest modeling.
" Admiral Fraxin was a man in the ' sere and yel-
low leaf of meridian life. His form was firm and up-
right, and his costume was that of a youthful courtier ;
but deep wrinkles tracked his brow with the foot-
prints of age, and his hair had caught the snow-flakes
of the mountain's farther side. That foretaste of eter
nal torments, the gout, had rather confused the meas-
ure of his tread, and the stout old Admiral entered the
lady's presence with an ungraceful limp.
" As he passed into the room, a little figure clad in
blue and silver, followed him noiselessly and, with
wonderful agility, darted behind a curtain of the win-
" Olinska received her admirer with some embar-
rassment, which he seemed at first to reciprocate ; but
at length, after many leers and grimaces, his counte-
nance assumed a determined expression, and he went
directly to the point.
" ' Madam,' he said, ' you can scarcely be ignorant
of the object for which I now visit you ; nor can you
feel more deeply than I the extremely unpleasant posi-
290 OKPHEUS C. KERK PAPERS.
tion in which we are both placed, hj the desire of
Peter. Aside from the duty I owe my sovereign of
submittino^ entirely to his will, I have a sentiment in
my heart, which, should it find a reflection in yonrs,^^
will make me the happiest of men. My title and fortune '
are trifles ; but the sentiment of love for yourself, uni-
ted to that of loyal obedience, may, perhaps, be deemed
by you as more powerful suitors for your hand and
" ' It were foolish in me to pretend to misunderstand
you, my lord,' replied Olinska, with dignity. - 'I am
aware that the Czar favors your suit, and look% upon
me as a fitting bride for one whom he delights to hoBt)r ;
but, greatly as I honor and respect both my sovereign
and yourself, I must positively refuse obedience in this
instance, and assume the right to act for myself. I am
deeply grateful to you, my lord, for your intended
kindness, but must, with all due respect, reject your
offer, and close our interview.'
" As she spoke, her bosom heaved with emotions
boiling within, her eye flashed, and the right of woman
to maintain her prerogative shone from every feature.
" ' Consider well, lady, before you drive me to des-
pair by such cruelty !' exclaimed the Admiral, with
vehemence. ' Consider what you are casting aside as
worthless. I have influence at court beyond that of
the most powerful ; the very Czar fears to off'end me,
and the wife of Admiral Praxin will be second only to
the imperial Catherine in grandeur and dominion. Let
me hope that this is only maiden coyness, and that de-
liberation may alter your decision.'
" ' I will not deceive you, my lord,' responded the
SECOND SERIES. 291
ladj, ' by awaking hopes which can never be realized.
Mj liand shall never be yielded to any man by com-
pulsion, or implied claims which I do not acknowl-
edge ; nor do I recognize any other right than my own
to dispose of it. Dwell upon the subject no longer, or
your title to the name of friend will be forfeited. Al-
low me to retire.'
" Dismay was betrayed in every lineament of the
sailor's countenance, as he marked the firm tones in
which these w^ords were spoken ; but anger quickly
took its place as he asked, with a glance of suspicion,
" ' Lady, have I a rival V
" Olinska answered hot, and arose to leave the apart-
ment, when Praxin quickly intercepted her, and fell
upon his knees.
*' ' Olinska, you shall not leave me thus !' he ex-
claimed, in tones hoarse with excitement. ' If love
will not incline you to accept me, let ambition do it.
I have the power to place you on the throne of Russia^
if you but say the word ; your own countrymen, the
refugees from Sweden, and twenty thousand discon-
tented serfs will rise at my bidding ; the navy is mine,
and, by a wave of the hand, I can become an Em-
" With a look of the most unmitigated disdain, the
lady regarded the supplicant at her feet.
" ' I will not parley longer with a traitor^ she said,
in tones so cold and piercing that he involuntarily re-
coiled from her, and she walked from the apartment
with a queenly air.
" ' I'll be revenged for this,' muttered the discarded
Buitor, as, with a frowning brow, he took his deparure.
293 ORPHEUS C. KEKR PAPERS.
^' Then forth sprang Orloff from his place of conceal-
ment, with a smile of no ordinary magnitude distort-
ing his little face.
" ' Good ! and now for the Countess !' he exclaimed,
following the Admiral.
" Meanwhile, l!sicholas had wandered about the city
in a most pitiable state of apprehension, and was about
to rush madly to the hotel of the Countess, when he
beheld the dwarf hastening toward him, carrying a
letter at arm's length.
"'Here — from the Countess,' ejaculated Orloff,
panting for breath, and handing him the missive.
Nicholas hastily tore it open, and read :
" ' Dear jS'icholas : — Olinska has had an interview
with the Admiral, and, from its results, I fear the
worst. Have a chaise and four, at the private door of
my hotel before sunset to-day. You may trust Orloff.
" ' In haste, Walewski.'
" ' Shall I engage the conveyance V asked the dwarf,
with a grin.
" ' Yes ! I will trust you,' replied the excited officer.
" ' You will find all in readiness, at the private door,
by four o'clock !' said Orloff, and he disappeared as
quickly as he came.
" At the appointed hour, Nicholas repaired to the
spot where a chaise and its attendants were awaiting
him, and right speedily a muffled figure emerged from,
the private door, and touched his arm.
" ' Olinska, dearest Olinska.'
SECOND SERIES. 293
" 'Let us hasten, Nicholas, I fear we are betrayed,'
answered Olinska, trembling in his arms.
"The officer quickly placed her in the chaise, and the
horses had made their first spring forward when a great
tumult arose in the street, and looking forth from a
window of the vehicle, Nicholas beheld, to his dismay,
half a score of imperial cavalry galloping furiously to-
" ' Onward ! onward !' he shouted to the drivers,
and sank back upon his seat, beside the fainting girl.
" At the top of their speed fled the four chaise hor-
ses, making the vehicle bounce from the earth as
though it were composed entirely of springs ; but they
were no match for the full-blooded animals of the cav-
alry, and the latter soon came up with them.
" ' Stop, in the name of the Czar,' said the leader,
drawing his sword.
''At the command, the postillions dropped their
reins, and the chaise came to a dead halt. Then the
door was burst open ; and Nicholas, with a pistol in
each hand, sprang into the road.
" ' Gentlemen,' he said hurriedly, ' you must allow
me to proceed ; the die is cast, and there is no turning
back. Stand aside, sirs, I do not wish to shed your
" ' Colonel Dimitri,' answered the leader, ' we are
sorry that such is our duty, but the Czar has ordered
us to apprehend you and your companion ; and carry
you before him ; 1 therefore apprehend you in the
name of Czar.'
" ' This is tyranny and I wdll resist it to the last,'
exclaimed the excited lover. ' I have not broken the
294 OEPHEUS C. KEKE PAPERS.
laws, and am no political criminal. Why should I be
treated thus ? You may take me gentlemen, but not
" ' We must do our duty,' answered the other. * Sur-
round and disarm him,' he added, turning to his follow-
" The soldiers approached to obey his orders, and
the desperate colonel had levelled his weapons, when
Olinska, sprang from the chaise and knelt upon the
ground before him.
" ' Submit, Nicholas ; for my sake submit,' she ex-
claimed, energetically, clasping her hands towards
" Nicholas regarded her attentively for a moment,
and then lowered his weapons.
" ' I am your prisoner,' he said ; ' take me where you
" The captured pair, were returned to the vehicle,
the horses' heads were turned, and in silence they pro-
ceeded to the palace of the Czar.
*' The imperial mansion was very different in those
days from what it now is. No gaudy trappings, neither
external nor internal, proclaimed the abode of royal-
ty ; for Peter the Great appealed to hearts, not the
eyes of his subjects, and for the inspection of foreign-
ers he had an army, unrivaled in discipline and accou-
trements, by any in Europe. A small ante-chamber,
plainly furnished, and adorned with various models of
ships, paintings, and rude implements of warfare led
into the the hall of audience, equally unostentatious,
and the imperial dining saloon, plain as that of an or-
SECOND SERIES. 295
" Into the latter apartment, Nicholas and Olinska
were led by their captors, pale and silent, but undis-
" A long table, bearing on its centre an immense
pie, was loaded with a rich repast ; and about it, were
seated the most distinguished nobles and generals of
the empire, and Admiral Praxin ; while at its head, on
elevated seats, appeared the Czar and Czarina.
" ' Ha ! here are the two fugitives !' exclaimed Peter,
observing the entrance of the party and approaching
" Nicholas started at the sound of that voice, and
looking up, recognized in his sovereign. The Little
Man in Green.
" ' Your pardon, sire !' he exclaimed falling upon his
knees, and remembering with the great trepidation
how scurvily he had treated royalty in disguise.
" ' Arise, Colonel Dimitri,' said the Czar kindly ;
' you need not think of what has past ; I am satified
that you are a true and loyal subject. But what pos-
sessed you to run away with this little rebel, man ? Did
you not know that she was affianced to Admiral Praxin?'
" ' Pardon me sire, I did not,' answered Nicholas.
^' ' And you Olinska ; you have disregarded our
wishes, and thrown the gallant admiral overboard V con-
tinued Peter, addressing the trembling girl, with a
mixture of severity and good-nature.
" Olinska bowed her head.
'' ' What say you Praxin ? Are you willing to yield
your bride to the army, and let the navy remain a
'' The Admiral had turned all colors, at the first en-
29Q OKI'HEUS C. KERK PAPERS.
trance of Olinska, but marking that she remained si-
lent, he plucked np sufficient courage to reply.
" ' I cannot accept the lady's hand without her
" ' Did you sue for them like a man V demanded
" ' I hope so, your majesty.'
" ■ You lie, base traitor !' thundered the Czar, eyeing
him with a glance that chilled his blood.
"' Has e9/!^ betrayed me?' ejaculated Praxin, turn-
ing deadly pale, and involuntarily clutching the han-
dle of his sword.
" ' Ko,' answered Peter in hoarse tones, ' witness,
"At that moment, the upper covering of the great
pie was observed to move, and in another instant, it
was thrown back, discovering the mighty Orloff,
seated within the dish.
" ' God save the Czar !' said the dwarf, rising and
stepping forth upon the table, w^ith a bow of studied
" ' Orloif, point out the traitor,' said Peter.
" Orloff assumed an air of great penetration, and
pointed toward the Admiral, who stood alone, with
his back against the wall, a perfect picture of despair-
'' ' That is the man,' said the dwarf.
" ' Give your proof.'
" Your majesty must know, that I was present while
Admiral Praxin was wooing the lady Olinska, and
heard him say that your majesty dared not offend him ;
he also declared that she had but to say the word, and
SECOND SERIES. 297
he would make her an Empress, explaining how he had
the Poles, the Serfs, the Swedish refugees, and the navy
at his command, ready at his bidding to make him
Emperor of Russia."
" 'AYhat say you to this charge V demanded Peter.
" Praxiu had regained somewhat of composure dur-
ing the dwarfs speech ; and at its conclusion he ap-
proached the Czar and falling upon his knees, surren-
dered his sword and belt.
" 'I am guilty,' he said, in firm tones. 'Take my
sword, gracious sovereign, and with it receive back the
commission I have forever disgraced. In a moment
of ungoverable passion I spoke w^ords which should
have choked me ere I uttered them, and which I
would give my life to recall. I desire no mercy ; yet
I would ask forgiveness of Olinska, for daring to
breathe treason in her presence.'
" ' Let us both forget it,' said Olinska, gently.
" 'Alas I can never forget it,' he replied, pressing
her hands to his lips, and resuming his former atti-
" The Czar gazed some moments attentively and
silently upon the face of Praxin, as though to read his
inmost soul, and tlien turning to Nicholas, he said :
"'Colonel Dimitri, it is bat just that I should
explain my conduct to you and Olinska, as it was by
making an unconscious tool of you that I have fer-
reted this matter out. I intended that Olinska should
have wedded the Admiral, not knowing that her affec-
tions had been given to another ; but lately I have
distrusted him and ordered a spy of the police to
watch him closely. My agent speedily brought me
298 OEPHEIJS C. KERR PAPERS.
news 0^ your engagement, and your intended course ;
and I resolved to throw myself in your way, and
gain a slight knowledge of your character. You know
how I succeeded in that attemjDt. I also requested
Olinska to receive the Admiral privately, and sent
Orloff to be present — though concealed — at the inter-
view. The Countess Walewski was made acquainted
with my plans, by the dwarf, and hence your pre-
sence here. As a punishment for an attempt to out-
wit me, I command tliat you be married before you
leave the palace. As for you, Admiral,' he continued,
turning to Praxin, ' in consideration of the many ser-
vices you have rendered us, I grant you a free par-
don. You have been humiliated in the eyes of your
friends, and have failed to win a prize worthy of my
best subject. May you learn the lesson that passion
will not always excuse dangerous words, nor is a sove-
reign's leniency everlasting.'
"Universal rejoicings followed this generous speech,
and the victims of the royal whim retired from the
imperial palace, married — for better or worse."
This Russian tale sent us all home very thirsty, my
boy ; for its effect was very dry.
Orpheus C. Kerr.
CONCERNING THE SERIOUS MISTAKE OF THE VENERABLE GAMMON,
THE chaplain's POETICAL DISCOVERY, THE PROMOTION OF COM-
MODORE HEAD, AND THE RECEPTION OF THE PRESIDENT'S PROCLA-
MATION BY THE SOUTHERN CONFEDERACY.
Washinqtox, D. C, October 12th, 1862.
The Southern Confederacy having delayed to sue
for peace, my boy, until the safety of Washington re-
quires that national strategy should continue metaphy-
sical hostilities, it may be as well for jou and me as a
nation to prepare for a speedy commencement of War
in earnest. The J^Torth, my boy, has not begun to
fight yet ; and as the stolid centuries roll on, and the
hoary years move one by one into the sunless solitude
of Eternity, it becomes daily more evident that the
ISTorth's actual putting forth of all its strength is
merely a question of time. The giant is only just
rousing from his slumbers, and nothing but his legs
and feet appear to be thoroughly awake yet.
IlTow, is the time, ray boy^ for the idiotic Confede-
racy to save himselt; by returning penitently (o that
beneficent Government which would have realized
the millenium at half-past two o'clock on the Fourth
of July. 1776, but for the unseemly villany of the
300 OKPHEUS C. KERK PAPERS.
accursed Black Republicans, many of whom are
shortly to be hung.
That is to say, such is the opinion of the Yenerable
Gammon, whose benignant presence is believed to
liave proved the salvation of our distracted country in
the Revolutionary War, though I can find nothing,
except his protecting patriarciial deportment toward
all the present universe, to justify the idea that he
ever benefited anything. It soothes the human soul,
my boy, to hear this Yenerable man discoursing on
the most trite subjects in tones, and with an air calcu-
lated to bless all created things as w^ith a paternal be-
nediction. Surrounded by a number of his idolatrous
national children, and standing in front of Willard's
the other evening, he pointed fatly to a bright star
overhead, and says he :
'' That star is like our country. That star," says
the Yenerable Gammon, with a meaningless smile of an-
gelic purity, "is like any other star on our flag;
though clouds may hide it in its ascending node^ it is
still knoioed to he ascending ^
Then everybody felt cheered with the peaceful con-
viction that Columbia was saved at last ; and it's my
private belief, my boy — my private belief, that the at-
tached populace looked upon this good old man as the
one who had made the star.
Yet, strange as it may seem, this venerable Bene-
factor made a little mistake on Tuesday. A sportive
young chap came to him w4th a newspaper in his hand,
and says he : " Let me see if you can tell, my Pater
Patria^ what paper this article is in " — and proceeded
to read the following high-minded editorial :
SECOND SERIES. 301
" TREASON OF THE BLACK REPUBLICANS.
" True to their foul instincts, the Greely, Cheever,
and "VYendell Phillips herd of treasonable fanatics are
now accusing their ' Honest Old Abe ' of ruining the
country. It was their votes that elected the rail-split-
ter, and now they turn tail upon him and howl male-
dictions because he will not carry out their fiendish
intents by erecting a revolutionary guillotine in every
ISTorthern town and city. That blasphemous mounte-
bank, Beecher, may as well cease his treasonable im-
piety at once ; for he and his Sharps'-riile crew are
responsible for the present bankruptcy of the whole
country, and the people will yet hold them to strict ac-
count for every drop of blood that has been and will
be shed in this unnatural strife."
"When sportive chap ceased reading, the Venerable
Gammon waved his obese hand with the fond, famil-
iar air of a pleased benignity, and says he :
'* Of course, I know what paper that is, my son. I
know the ring of those sterling conservative senti-
ments,' says the Yenerable Gammon, with calm satis-
faction, 'and am blessed in the knowledge that our
loyal ]N"ew York Herald is still true to the Constitution
and to the principles of my old friend, Georgey Wash-
ington — or ' old Wash,' as he permitted me to call
The sportive chap softly picked his teeth with a wisp
from a broom, and says he : " But this ain't the Herald
302 OEPHEus c. e:err papers.
at all, you dear old sonl ; it's a copy of the Kiclimond
"Whig !" It was at this very moment, my boy, that
the Yenerable Gammon was first attacked by that
dreadful cough which put an end to all farther con-
versation, and has since excited the most fearful
apprehensions lest a bereaved country should sud-
nenly be called to mourn the untimely loss of its be-
On Tuesday afternoon, I had a talk with the Mack-
erel chaplain, who had remained here over Sunday to
administer consolation to a dying brigadier, and was
grievously wounded in spirit to find that the telegraph
had committed a trifling breach of spelling, and that
that brigadier was only dyeing his hair, which had
suddenly turned white in a single night on the st-rength
of a rumor that there might be some fighting in the
The Mackerel chaplain, my boy, is of inestimable
value to a wounded man, his vivid and spiritual man-
ner of describing the celebrated Fire Department of
the other world being a source of unspeakable comfort
and reassurance to the suflferer. " I am afraid you
have led a sinful life, my fellow-worm," says he to the
sick Mackerel, " and can only advise you to buy one
of these hymn-books from me, which I can afi'ord to
sell for six shillino^s."
But what the cliaplain talked to me about, was his
discovery, at a village not far from Winchester, of a
SECOND SEEIE8. 303
It was a Sergeant old and gray,
Well singed and bronzed from siege and pillage,
Went tramping in an army's wake,
Along the turnpike of the village.
For days and nights the winding host
Had through the little place been marching.
And ever loud the rustics cheered,
'Till ev'ry throat was hoarse and parching.
The Squire and Farmer, maid and dame,
All took the sight's electric stirring,
And hats were waved and staves were sung,
And kerchiefs white were countless whirring.
They only saw a gallant show
Of heroes stalwart under banners,
And in the fierce heroic glow,
'Twas theirs to yield but wild hosannahs
The Sergeant heard the shrill hurrahs,
Where he behind in step was keeping ;
"But glancing down beside the road
He saw a little maid sit weeping.
" And how is this ?" he gruffly said,
A moment pausing to regard her ; —
" Why weepest thou, my little chit ?" —
And then she only cried the harder.
804: ORPHEUS C. KEKR PAPERS.
** And how is this, my little chit ?"
The sturdy trooper straight repeated,
" When all the village cheers us on,
That you, in tears; apart are seated ?
** We march two hundred thousand strong !
And that's a sight, my baby beauty,
To quicken silence into song
And glorify the soldier's duty."
It's very, very grand, I know,"
The little maid gave soft replying ;
And Father, Mother, Brother too.
All say ' Hurrah ' while I am crying ;
" But think — Mr. Soldier, think,
How many little sisters' brothers
Are going all away to fight
And may be killed, as well as others I"
" Why bless thee, child,'' the Sergeant said,
His brawny hands her curls caressing,
" 'Tis left for little ones like you
To find that War's not all a blessing."
And " Bless thee I" once again he cried ;
Then cleared his throat and looked indignant,
And marched away with wrinkled brow
To stop the struggling tear benignant.
SECOND SERIES. 305
And still the ringing shouts went up
From doorway, thatch, and fields of tillage ;
The pall behind the standard seen
By one alone, of all the village.
The oak and cedar bend and writhe
When roars the wind through gap and braken ;
But 'tis the tenderest reed of all
That trembles first when Earth is shaken.
It is with infinite satisfaction, my boy, that I record
the recognition of Commodore Head's priceless servi-
ces on Duck Lake by the Secretary of the Navy. Our
grim old son of Xeptune is created Rear- Admiral, with
the privilege of snubbing gunboat captains, receiving
serenades, attending launches, and lavishing untold
scorn upon the feeble imitations of affrighted Europe.
Hence, there would appear to be an imperative de-
mand in current literature for an authoritative
SKETCH OF COMMODORE HEAD.
Tliis venerable ornament of our peerless naval ser-
vice, to whom the eyes of the whole world are now di-
rected, was born of one of his parents at an early pe-
riod of his existence, and has since incurred the years
temporarily elapsing between that epoch and the pres-
ent auspicious occasion. The subject of our brief bi-
ography entered the navj when he was only fifty years
306 ORPHEUS C. KERR PAPERS.
old, as commander of the Mackerel iron-plated squad-
ron on Duck Lake, where he became widely noted for
success in fishing, as well as for his skill in eluding ves-
sels running the blockade. At one time, indeed, he came
very near capturing a Confederate ram, being only
prevented by failing to find the key of the box con-
taining his spectacles in time to reconnoiter the wily
foe. Commodore Head's conversation concerning the
speedy capture of Yicksburg, Charleston, Savannah
and Mobile, is instructive to all minds, and his promo-
tion is an event calculated to prove that the w^ar is
about to begin in earnest.
Rear- Admirals, my boy, are an aristocratic institu-
tion ; and their creation must serve to convince besot-
ted Europe, that in making a naval distinction between
rank and file, our discriminating Government knows
how to compromise matters by bestowing a new rank
upon an old file.
It was on Wednesday that my architectural steed,
the Gothic Pegasus, renewed his usual weekly journey
to desolated Accomac, cheerfully conveying me thither
at a speed that did not keep the same roadside house
in view more than half an hour at a time. Having
hitched the funereal stallion to a copy of Senator Sum-
ner's recent Faneuil Hall speech, believing that docu-
ment sufficiently heavy to hold him, I gave him a dis-
carded straw-hat of mine for his dinner, and strolled
into the Mackerel camp.
To the everlasting disgrace of our rulers be it said,
my boy, I found the devoted Mackerel Brigade pro-
SECOND sERras. 307
gressing toward deep suifering at a rate which made
me thank Heaven that I owned no chickens within
sight of the harrowing scene. Being thoughtlessly
supplied with three days' rations at a time, these ne-
glected martyrs incur all the perils of suffocation and
cruel nightmare by doing nothing on the first day hut
eat from morning till night, what is left over at mid-
night being used to pelt each other with. Then for
two whole days these gallant men who are fighting our
battles find famine staring them in the face, and I act-
ually heard one emaciated Mackerel chap offering a
whole week's pay to another Mackerel chap for a Con-
federate cracker which he had picked up in a field,
wishing to consign that cracker to his friends at home
as a sample of the unnatural food with which an un-
grateful Republic feeds its faithful soldiers. I even
found many Mackerels without knapsacks and blank-
ets, which they had lost in adventures at " Old Sledge" ;
and there was that in the countenances of others which
sured me that their poor faces had not been washed
since the commencement of the war !
My soul turns sick at these things, my boy, and they
even have an effect upon a beholder's stomach. To
think that our noble volunteers, our country's pre-
servers, should be subjected to sufferings in which they
have not even the poor consolation of knowing that
somebody else than themselves is responsible there-
Keflectively I turned from the scene of agony, and
had rambled some fifteen mini>tes in an adjacent bit of
woods, when the sound of voices near by made me
308 ORPHEUS C. KKRK PAPKES.
stop short behind a tree and peer eagerly through an
opening in the nearest thicket.
Seated just beyond some evergreen bushes were four
dilapidated Confederacies, solemnly discussing the
great Emancipation Proclamation of our Honest Abe ;
whilst close by them, and astride of a mossy stone, was
the accomplished swordsman, Captain Munchausen,
frantically, and with many hiccups, endeavoring at
one and the same time to catch a phantom fly and
maintain his equestrian position.
One of the Confederacies took a bite from a cold
potatoe which he held in his hand, and, says he :
" I reckon that it's near time for the unsubjugated
South to adopt Eetaliatory measures, and prochiim
that all prisoners hereafter taken by the Confederacy
shall be previously shot and made into bone-orna-
Here Captain Munchausen burst into an unseemly
peal of laugluer as he made another wild clutch at
the phantom-fly, and says he :
" Wher — where's Mary's — ary's — snuff-box ?"
Not perceiving that this special remark was relev-
ant to the question in view, a second Confederacy
merely tightened the string which held his inexpressi-
bles in place, and, says he :
*' What has been proposed by the Honorable Gen-
tleman from the Alms House is not sufficiently severe.
'Bo mercy should be shown to the Washington demon,
and I move that any Federal soldiers found disturbing
a Confederacy during the progress of a battle shall be
at once executed for arson."
The impression created by this motion extended
SECOND SERIES. 309
even to Captain Munchausen, who fell flat on his face
in a frantic attempt to catch the spectral insect, and
exclaimed, in tones of awful solemnity ;
'' I don't want (hie) to be marri — ry — arried — Hie !"
After a moment's pause, the third Confederacy fin-
ished buttoning his coat with a bit of corn-cob, and
says he :
*' I move that the last Resolution be amended, to
make it a capital crime for any person whatever to be
guilty of Federal extraction."
Kow, it chanced, my boy, that there was a Mackerel
picket eating a confiscated watermelon in a clump of
bushes close behind me; and just at this crisis of the
debate, he casually tossed a piece of the rind in the di-
rection of the Confederacies. It happened to fall in
their midst, whereupon the enraged statesmen were
seized with great tremblings, and immediately skedad-
dled in all directions, the last being Captain Mun-
chausen, wdio at first endeavored to carry a rock of some
hundred pounds' w^eight away with him, and ulti-
mately retreated in a highly-circuitous manner, with
an expression of abject despair under his cap.
It is said, my boy, that the celebrated Confederacy
will resent the Proclamation by raising the Black Flag.
It is a common belief, that if such be the case, it will
be the duty of our generals to raise the blacks without
Yours, if it come to that,
Orpheus C. Kerr.
SETTING FORTH THE FALSE AND TRUE ASPECTS OF BEAMING OLD
AGE RESPECTIVELY, AND SHOWING HOW THE UNBLUSHING CONFE-
DERACY MADE ANOTHER RAID.
Washino-ok, D. C, October 19tli, 18C2.
It is a beautiful and improving thing, mj boy, to
see the wise and polished mob of a great nation pay-
ing unmitigated reverence to fussy gray hairs, and
much shirt coHar ; and hence I never grew tired of
considering the dignified case of the Venerable Gam-
mon, whom everybody regards as the benign paternal
relative of his country. AYhen I see Generals, Sena-
tors, and other proprietors of Government property,
hanging breatlilessly upon the words of this sublime
old man, just as though such words were so many gal-
lows, I feel the cause of Justice typified to my mind's
eye, and am myself enthusiastic enough to believe
that hano^inof is too 2:ood for them. Whether at Wil-
lard's, the White House, the Capitol, or in his native
Mugville, the Yenerable Gammon is ever the same
beneficent being, beaming blandly upon the whole
universe from above his ruffles, and paternally permit-
ting it to exist in his presence.
The precise thinor he has clone in his fearfully long
SECOND SERIES. 311
lifetime, my boy, to beget such an agony of love and
worship from everybody, has not yet come to the
immediate knowledge of anybody ; but he is the moss-
grown oracle of the United States of America, and it
gives me unspeakable satisfaction to reproduce as fol-
lows, liis benign letter of advice to the idolized Gene-
ral of the Mackerel Brigade :
MuGviLLE, July 4, 1776.
Dear Sirrah, — Justly regarding you as the next
President of the United States, and an honored suc-
cessor of my old friend, Georgey Washington, I deem
it proper, by reason of my great importance and in£r-
mities, to repeat in writing with a pen what I have
before spoken to you with my tongue — this supple-
ment to my printed views (dated April the First) on
the higlil}^ inflamed condition of our glorious and
To meet the expectations of a populace admiring
my venerable shape, I deem it consistent with my re-
tiring modesty and infirmities to dictate to you the
four plans you may pursue by way of making yourself
President of our distracted Commonwealth in 1865.
I. — ^Throw off the old and assume a new designa-
tion — the sly old party ; give the South entire control
of the whole country, and, my wig upon it, we shall
have no secession ; but, on the contrary, an early re-
turn of the entire Confederacy to Washington, AVith-
out some equally benignant measure, we shall be com-
pelled to fight all the Border States and put them
312 0KPHEU6 C. KERR PAPERS.
down at once, instead of keeping two liiindred thou-
sand soldiers peaceably employed in making their loy-
alty continually sure.
11. — Collect the war taxes outside of the States
where the tax-payers live, or declare upon paper that
they are already collected.
III. — Conquer the seceded States by the unheard-of
agency of an actual army. I think this miglit be
done in a few hundred years by a young and able
general to be found on some railroad, with six hun-
dred thousand disciplined spades. Estimating a tliird
of this number to remain for ever stationary on the
Potomac, and a loss of a still greater number by con-
summate strategy and changings of base. The loss of
chickens and contrabands on the other side would be
frightful, however great the morality of the mud-
This conquest w^ould cost money that might oth-
erwise go to beautify the South, secure fifteen
swearing and deeply -offended provinces, and be im-
mediately followed by a new election for President in
IV. — Say to the Seceded States, in one of which I
own some mortgages : *' How are you^ Southern Con-
Deliberately, I remain,
Your father and the country's,
SECOND SERIES. 313
TIlis touching letter, my boy, I recommend to your
most prayerful consideration, as a paternal outpouring
of shirt-collared old age.
Old age ! how beautiful art thou in tlie glory of
thy spectacles, and the sublime largeness of thy sto-
mach and manner. And yet, would you believe it,
my boy ? I am sometimes possessed of great doublings
as to tlie genuineness of that majesty which makes a
continually-looming Yenerable Shape such a great
blessing to an imperiled land. Sometimes there comes
to me a rickety vision of:
AGE BLUNTLY CONSIDERED.
As Age advances, ails and aches attend,
Backs builded broadest burdensomely bend ;
Cuttingly cruel comes consuming Care,
Dealing delusions, drivelry, despair.
Empty endeavor enervately ends,
Fancy forlornly feigns forgotten friends;
Gout, grimly griping, gluttonously great,
Hasten's humanity's hard-hearted hate.
Intentions imbecile invent ideas
Justly jocunding jolly jokers' jeers :
Knowledge — keen kingdom knurlyably known-
Lingers, lamenting life's long lasting loan,
314 . ORPHEUS C. KEKE PAPERS.
Mammonly mumming, magnifying motes,
Nurtures numb Nature's narrowest nursery notes,
Opens old age'? odious offering out —
Peevish punctilio, parrot-pining pout.
Qualmishly querrying, quarrelsomely quaint,
Rousing rife ridicules' repealed restraint ;
Speaking soft silliness — such shallow show
That tottering toysters, tickled, titter too.
Useless, ungainly unbeloved, unblest.
Virtue's vague visor, vice's veiling vest,
"Wheezingly whimpering, wanting wisdom, wit,
Xistence, Xigent, Xclaims — Xit I
Youths, you're yclept youth's youngest ; yet you'll
Zestless zig-zaggers zanyable zealed.
I exhibited that pleasing little poem to a Mackerel
chap, who stuttered, my boy ; and he came so near go-
ing into apoplexy through his endeavors to read it,
that I was obliged to make a joke, in order that he
might smile, relax, and recover.
And now let your mind fly, like a wearied dove, to
the celebrated Arcadian scenes of festive Accomac,
where the Mackerel Brigade continues to reconnoitre
in force, and awaits the death of the Confederacy by
old age. Men, my boy, who entered this strategic war
in the full bloom of youth, now go with stooping
shoulders and totterins: srait when thev have a barrel
of flour to carry, and the bloom has departed from ev-
ery part of them save the extreme tip of that handle
SECOND SERIES. 315
of the human coiintenance which first meets the edge
of an open door in the dark. Even the Mackerel
brass- band begins to grow feeble, often making pitia-
ble attempts to execute stirring strains on his night key
bugle, as though unconscious that by long disuse in
his pocket it had become clogged with bread and
There is, on the Southern border of Accomac, my
boy, a solitary house, containing furniture and the
necessaries of life, which the Conic Section of the
Mackerel Brigade had been ordered to guard. It
stands immediately on the verdant banks of Awlkwyet
River, where that stream must be at least ten inches
deep ; and as the first regular bridge is ten miles be-
low it. of course the Conic Section, to guard the house
was placed at the end of that bridge — it being a prin-
ciple of national strategy never to recognize any Con-
federate raid not made across a regular bridge.
Now it chanced, that while the Conic Section at the
bridge was taking a short nap, having been up very
late the night before ; and while the beloved General
of the Mackerel Brigade was visiting a portion of his
beautiful home-circle in Paris, that a very dirty Con-
federacy, riding in a seedy go-cart, made his appear-
ance on the bank of the river opposite the house, and
commenced to make a raid right through the Avater to
the shore this side. His geometrical steed wet his feet
thereby, and the wheels of his squeaking vehicle were
damped by this barbarian way of offering irregular op-
position to the Government ; but what cared he for the
rules of civilized warfare, which are the only author-
ized "West Point editions? Like all his infatuated
316 ORPHEUS C. KERR PAPERS.
countiymen, he was rendered less than strategic by
the demon of Secession, and he crossed by the unmil-
itary ford instead of by the military bridge.
This is, indeed, heart-sickening.
There was a Mackerel chap who slept in the hons
to take care of a large black bottle, and when he heard
the go-cart driving up before the door, he stuck his
head out of the window, and says he :
" What is it which you would have in these irregu-
lar proceedings, Mr. Stuart ?"
The Confederacy dismounted from his chariot, tied a
bag of oats over his charger's head, and says he :
" I'm making a raid."
The Mackerel waved his hand southward, and says
"You'll find the bridge just below. Don't stay
here," says the Mackerel, earnestly, " or you'll exas-
perate the Korth to fury."
Here the Confederacy made some remark in which
the name of the ITortli and a profane expletive were
connected very closely, and proceeded to bring from
the house a hobby-horse which stood in the hall. After
placing this valuable article in his go-cart, he next
brought out a cooking-stove ; closely following this with
some chairs, a dining-table, two feather beds, a tea-set,
four wine-glasses and some tumblers, a looking-glass,
four sheets, two cottage bedsteads, a Brussels carpet,
and a Maltese cat. With these and a few other excep-
tions, my boy, he made no attempt to disturb private
property ; thereby proving that the President's Pro-
clamation has already produced a wholesome effect in
the degenerate South.
SECOND SERIES. 31Y
"While this was going on, the vigilant Mackerel
guard descended privately from a back window, and
made a forced march to where the Conic Section were
watchino^ something: which looked like a man in the
Southern horizon — instantly making known the auda-
cious raid of the thieving Confederacy, and asking
whether the new levies of the Executive's last call
were likely to arrive early enough to take measures for
the prevention of the capture of Washington.
While the question was in debate, my boy, the be-
loved General of the Mackerel Brigade arrived with
his trunk and umbrella from Paris, and having caused
it to be telegraphed to all the reliable morning jour-
nals that the Confederacy were now in a fair way to
be captured alive, he at once took measures to cut off
the retreat of the latter. Captain Yilliam Brown, with
Company 8, Regiment 5, was at once ordered to con-
struct a pontoon bridge across the river some miles be-
low, and watch it vigilantly day and night ; Captain
Bob Shorty and Colonel Wobert Wobinson, with the
Anatomical Cavalry, were dispatched to take posses-
sion of a railroad leading to Manassas ; whilst Captain
Samyule Sa-mith with the balance of the Conic Sec-
tion, was commanded to make a detour of three hun-
dred miles, and endeavor to reach the invaded house
before midwinter set in.
All these movements were in accordance with pro-
found strategy, my boy, and cut off the Confederacy
from retreat by every route in the world, except the
insignificant one he came by.
Satisfied that the war was going to end in about
sixty days, after which we should have time to defeat
318 ORPHEUS 0. KERR PAPERS.
combined Europe, the Mackerel guard hastened back
to the domicil, which he reached just in time to lind
the Confederacy topping his go-cart with some kiiid-
ling-wood from the cellar.
I regret to say, my boy — I blush for my species as
I make the incredible revelation — that upon receiving
the information of his surrounding and probable stra-
tegic capture by the vigilant Mackerel Brigade, the
irreverent Confederacy burst into a hideous horse-
laugh, and at once proceeded to appropriate the poor
Mackerel chap's own shoes and stockings. With the
deepest horror I record, that he also tweaked the
" I did not intend this as a permanent invasion," says
the impious Confederacy, as he remounted his go-cart
and turned his geometrical Arabian toward the water
again ; *' but I have just married a daughter of South
Carolina — one of two twins — and reckoned that I
needed some things to set up housekeeping. Fare-
well, foul Hessian," says the Confederacy, as he
splashed through the w^ater to the opposite bank —
"fare thee well, and tell your fiendish ruler, that it is
somewhat impossible to conquer the sunny South."
The Mackerel chap gazed thoughtfully after the
,go-cart as it disappeared on the other side of the
balmy Awlkwyet stream, and says he : '' Rail on,
my erring brother; but if you'd only stayed here
one more week, you might not have escaped thus for
seven whole days. Had the army being insufficient to
secure you," says the Mackerel to himself, "had the
army been insufficient to secure you, why, there's the
SECOND SEKIES. 319
Raids, my boy, are so intrinsically irregular in. their
character, that no provision can be made for them in
a regular army ; hence they are sometimes necessi-
tated to take provisions for themselves as they go on.
Oepheus C. Keek.
REFERRING TO THE MOSQUITO AS A TEST OF HUMAN NATURE, EX-
PLAINING THE LONG HALT OF THE MACKEREL BRIGADE, AND
NOTING THE COURT OF INQUIRY ON CAPTAIN VILLIAM BROWN.
WASHi:TGToy, D. C, October 26th, 1862.
Early this morning, mj boy, I sauntered across the
Long Bridge and took my seat upon the topmost rail
of a fence enclosing a trampled meadow. There I
sat, like Marius, my boy, contemplating the architec-
tural ruin embodied in my Gothic steed, Pegasus, and
ever and anon whistling abstractedly to my frescoed
By the gods ! I really love these dumb friends of
mine. The speculative eye of tlie world sees in poor
Pegasus nothing more than an architectural dream —
the church architecture of the future — and, I must
confess, my boy, that the Gothic charger does look
something like a skeleton chapel at a distance ; it
sees in Bologna only a mongrel cur, whose taste for
the calves of human legs is an epicurean outrage on
walking society. But for me, my boy, there is a human
pathos in the patient fidelity of these zoological curio-
sities which appeals to my best manhood. I liave had
a hard and thankless life of it ; my experience with
SECOND SERIES. 321
the knowing political chaps of the Sixth Ward was
enongli to grind everything like Ir.irnan tenderness
out of mj nature, and make me turn an arrogant and
contemptnous misanthrope; but there are times when
the cold nose of Pegasus against my cheek, or a wag
from that speaking tail of Bologna — which curls up
behind him like a note of interrogation, to ask how his
master feels — will give me such a sensation of wishing
to protect and be kind to the Helpless, that I feel my-
self a better man for the practical Christianity of
such humble society.
There is my mosquito, the youthful Humboldt, too !
He came to me one night, about two years ago, my
boy, practising much profound strategy to capture my
nose; and when I foiled him by a free use of both
arms of the service, the unterrified and hummlncr
manner in which he changed the base of his opera-
tions and came on again, excited my admiration and
respect. Catching him in a little net cage made from
the musquito bars of my bed, I kept him safely by
me, and now use him as a test of human nature. In
God's providence, each minute created thing has its
appointed use, my boy, and depend upon it, the use
of the musquito is to test human nature.
There was a veteran political chap from Albany call-
ed upon me last Sunday night. A sage and aged chap
of iniiuite vest, who wears the broad-brimmed hat of
reticent respectability, and nestles in much shirt-
collar like a centuried owl. Having taken a pinch of
snuff after the dirty manner of a Gentleman of the
Old School, he merely paused to take a hasty glance
822 OEPHEUS C. KERR PAPERS.
at the plan for the next Senatorial election in his
note book, and then says he :
" I'm grievously dis'pointed, yea, piteonsly vexed,
to see the partisan spirit raging so furiously in State
elections, at a time when an expiring country calls
upon all her sons, irrespective of party, to join hands
in the great work of saving her. Why cannot these
turbulent denouncers of each other be like me, who
recognize no division of party in this national crisis?
I would have a union of all men to vote for the one
great ticket of my choice ; and even the democrat I
would recognize as a fellow being in such a case."
I suspected this grievous old chap to be a hypo-
crite, my boy, and I managed to let Humboldt free
from his cage for the purpose of testing him. As the
aged chap commenced to get warm, Humboldt began
to make raids round his sagacious head, and with
divers slaps in the air, the aged chap waxed spirited,
and says he ;
" Pshoo ! pshoo ! — As I was saying, we should all
strive to conciliate our political adversaries — pshoo !
and endeavor to promote a spirit of unity even with
the most disaflfected peace men — pshoo. you beast ! —
and not act like Greeley and Wendell Phillips, and
Beecher — confound it, pshoo ! — and other infernal
fanatics ; who, by their indiscreet, imprudent — curse
it, pshoo ! — and infernal, God-forsaken niggerism, are
wounding the tenderest feelings — thunder and light-
ning, pshoo ! — and rousing the hellish passions of
really good democrats, who thereby make capital
from their sadly mistaken — blazes and blue lightning,
pshoo ! — and devilish craziness, which is unfortunately
GECOND SERIES. 823
confusing — good heavens, pshoo, pshoo ! — and damn-
ing their own party, and knocking thunder out of the
gubernatorial canvass ; besides — besides — "
Here this aged chap made a flying leap at Hum-
boldt, missed his aim, and then dashed madly from
Depend upon it, my boy, a musquito is a great test
of liuman nature. The little chap operates like an
outside conscience, and brings the real thing to the
Why does not the Mackerel Brigade advance?
This, my boy, is the question of the hour. For what
do our heroes wait ? Is it for india-rubbers, or umbrel-
las, or fine-tooth combs? ISio ! be not deceived : it is for
none of these.
Hem ! The fact is, my boy, many respectable
though married Mackerels entered the army of the
Accomac when they were in tlie prime of life ; and as
old age steals softly upon them, as the seasons and the
bases of operations run through their changes, and
year succeeds year, the eye-sight of many of them
waxes dim, and fails in the process of IS'ature. I know
some thousands of Mackerels, my boy, who are already
so blind that they have not seen a rebel for six months ;
and hence, no advance-movement can be judiciously
made imtil the brigade is supplied with spectacles.
Without these, the idolized General of the Mackerel
Brigade will not do anything until he gets ready. It
was the want of these, as I now discover, that pre-
vented our troops seeing the Southern Confederacy
when he made his late raid across Awlkwyet River.
Let the spectacles be at once procured, my boy ; or an
324: OKPHEUS C. KERK PAPEES.
indignant and bleeding nation will at once demand a
change in the Cabinet.
Company 3, Regiment 5, is the only Company yet
fitted with glasses, and was therefore selected to make
a reconnoissance toward Paris, under Colonel TVobert
Wobinson, on Tuesday afternoon, for the purpose of
discovering whether the Confederacies there were
very tired of waiting yet. Glaring through their spec-
tacles, these gallant beings advanced until they met a
Parrot shell going the other way, and then returned with
hasty discipline, bringing with them a captured con-
traband, who was so anxious to remain in their com-
pany that he actually ran very fast.
Upon regaining the camp in Accomac, my boy, the
colonel had the intelligent contraband brought before
him, and says he :
" If I mistake not, friend Africa, you were escaping
from the bonds of oppression when we took you?"
The intelligent contraband shifted a silver soup-ladle
from one pocket to the other, and says he :
" Yes, mars'r colonel, I hab left my ole mars'r for de
good of his bressed soul."' Here the attached bond-
man snified and shook his head.
" Are you pious ?" says Colonel "W^obinson, much af-
fected by such an example of humble devotion.
"Yes, mars'r I is dat," says the fond creature, wip-
ing his brow with a silk vest from his dress- coat pocket,
" and I wished to save my ole mars'r from de sin of de
wicked. I know dat it was wrong for him to own nig-
gas, and dat he was more sinful de more he done it.
And I run away, Mars'r Colonel, to save dat ole man's
bressum soul from any more dam."
SECOND SEEIE3. 325
Colonel AVobinson took oflf his spectacles in order
that the steam from his tears might not dim them, and
says he :
"I had not looked for this in one so black. Leave
those silver spoons with me. friend Africa, and I will
send them to my wife. Sergeant, convey this dark be-
ing, who has taught us all such a lesson of self-sacri-
fice, to the chaplain ; and tell the chaplain to look out
for his pocket."
How beautiful is it, my boy, to see in the uncouth,
unlettered slave, a spirit of piety so shiningly practical.
When I beheld the brutalized bondman evince such
signs of religion, I am reminded of those tender and
precocious little babes, who sometimes delight their
mothers with exalted utterances of the like, and am in-
clined to believe that one knows just as much about
it as the other does.
It pains me to say, my boy, that Captain Yilliam
Brown so far forgot himself on Wednesday, upon dis-
covering the non-arrival of the spectacles, that housed
language of an incedeniary description against the be-
loved General of the Mackerel Brigade, thereby prov-
ing himself to be one of those crazy fanatics who are
trying to ruin our distracted country. He said, my
boy, that the adored General of the Mackerel Brigade
was a dead-beat, and furthermore observed that he
would be very sorry to take his word.
Such language could not pass unnoticed, and a Court
of Inquiry, composed of Captains Bob Shortly, Sam-
yule Sa-mith, and Colonel Wobert Wobinson, was in-
stantly called. The Court had a decanter and tumbler
only, to aid its deliberations, it being determined by
326 ORPHEUS C. KEKR PAPERS.
the War Department that no fact which could be de-
tected even by the aid of a glass, should go unin-
Yilliam having been summoned to the presence,
Samyule declared the Court in session, and says he :
"The sad duty has become ours, to investigate cer-
ting charges against a brother in arms which has here-
tofore been the mirror of chivalry. It is specified
against him :
'''First — Tliat said Captain Yilliam Brown, Eske-
vire, did affirm, declare, avow, testify, and articulate,
with his tongue, licker, and organ of speech, that the
General of the Mackerel Brigade was a dead-beat.
" ' Seco7id — That aforesaid Captain Yilliam Brown,
Eskevire, did proclaim, utter, enunciate, fulminate and
swear, that lie would not take the word of the Gen-
eral ot the Mackerel Brigade.'
" "What has the culprit to say to these charges ? Did
he say that our idolized Commander w^as a dead-
Yilliam smiled calmly, and says he : " The chaste
remark exactly fits the orifice of my lips."
" Confine yourself to English," says Colonel Wobin-
son, majestically. '* What do you mean by the obser-
"Why," says Yilliam, pleasantly, "I meant, that
before he was beaten he must be dead. And after
death, you know," says Yilliam, reaching one hand ab-
stractedly toward the decanter, " after death, you
know, we must all V eaten by worms."
This explanation, my boy, was satisfactory, and con-
veyed a grave moral lesson ; but the court felt con-
SECOND SERIES. 327
vinced that tliat the second charge could not be thus
Captain Samyule Sa-mith set down the tumbler for a
moment, and says he :
" You're not guilty on the first count, Yilliam ; but
didn't you say that you wouldn't take the word of the
General of the Mackerel Brigade ?"
'' Which I did," says Yilliam.
"And w^hat excuse have you to offer, my trooper?"
says Captain Bob Shorty, pointing the question with
" Is the general a gentleman ?" says Yilliam, search-
The court believed him to be such.
^ " Ah ! " says Yilliam, '' then if he's a gentleman, he
always Jceej)S his word, and of course it is impossible
to take it."
Yerdict of " not guilty, with a recommendation to
Courts of Inquiry, my boy, are calculated to draw-
out the rich humor of military character, and are
equally useful and appropriate with all other jokes, in
times of devastating war.
Okpheus C. Kerb.
SHOWING WHAT EFFECT DEMOCRATIC TRIUMPHS HAVE UPON THL
PRESIDENT, NOTING OUR CORRESPONDENT'S STRANGE MISTAKE
ABOUT A BRITISH FLAG, AND INDICATING THE STRAGETIC ADVANCE
OF THE MACKEREL BRIGADE.
"Washington, D. C, November 7th, 1862.
TnE late election in Xew York, my boy, lias electri-
fied everybody except our Honest Abe, who still goes
about smiling, like a long and amiable sexton, and con-
tiuues to save our distracted country after the manner
of an honest man. On Tuesday night, a high moral
Democratic chap, of much watch-seal, who liad just
received a dispatch all about the election, went to see
the Honest Abe, for the express purpose of telling him
that the Democratic party had been born again, and
was on the point of protesting against everything what-
soever, except the Constitution of our forefathers. He
found the Honest Abe cracking some wahiuts before
the fire, my boy, and says he :
*' The celebrated Democratic organization, of which
I am Assistant Engineer, has carried the State of New
York in a manner impossible to express, and will now
proceed to demand of you a vigorous prosecution of
that unnatural strife in which are involved our lives,
our liberties, and the pursuit of happiness. We ad-
SEOOKD SEEIES. 329
mire to see your harmless honesty," says the chap,
blandly, "and we believe yon to be a fresh egg ; but
we protest against the arbitrary arrest of men which
is patriots, only conservatively Democratic ; and w^e
insist upon a vigorous prosecution of Constitutional
hostilities against our misguided brothers who are now
offering irregular opposition to the Government."
The Honest Abe cracked a walnut, and says he :
" You say, neighbor, that the organization still insists
upon a vigorous prosecution of the war ?"
The Democratic chap sliced a toothpick from the
arm of the chair with his knife, and says he : " That
is the present platform on which we are 1^ jpluribus
" Well," says the Honest Abe, " I believe that you
mean well ; but am reminded of a little story.
" When I was practicing law out in Illinois," says the
Honest Abe, twisting the bow of his black necktie
around from under his left ear, " there was an old cock
with two sons, living near me in a tumble-dow^n old
shanty. He lived there until half his roof blew off one
windy night, and then he concluded to move to a new
house, where the chimney didn't take up all the upper
story. On the day when he moved, he'd got most all
his traps changed to the other residence, and had sent
one of his sons to see that they were all got safely in-
doors, when suddenly a shower commenced to come up.
The old man and his other offspring, who had stayed
to hurry him, were taking up a carpet from the floor
at the time the first dose of thunder cracked, and the
offspring says he, ' Hurry up, old crazy -bones, or
we'll be ketched in the freshet before you get up
SECOND SERIES. 330
tliis here rich fabric' The stern parent heeded the
admonition, and went ripping away the carpet around
the edges of the room, until he came near where the
oifspring was standing, and there it stuck. He pulled,
but it wouldn't come, and he says, says he : ' 'Pears to
me that dod-rotted tack must be a tenpenny nail — it
holds on so.' You see, the old screw was very blind
without his specs," says the Honest Abe, buttoning his
vest askew, " and he couldn't see just where the tack
was. Another peal of thunder at this moment made
the irascible offspring still madder, and he says, says
he : ' You misabul old cripple, if you don't hurry up
we'll be ketched, I tell you !' As he made this dutiful
remark he went stamping to the window, and at the
same moment the cantankerous tack came out, and the
aged parent went over on his back with tlie carpet up
to his chin. He got up and dusted, and says he :
* Well, now, that is cur'ous — how suddent it went.
Then he proceeded to rip away again, until it came
near the window, and there it stuck once more. The
wild offspring saw him tugging again, and it made him
so wrathy that he says, says he : ' Why in thunder
didn't you take the nails out first, you crooked old sin-
ner, you ? It's enough to make me weep afresh for the
old woman, to see how you — ' But he didn't finish his
observation ; for, as he walked toward where the ham-
mer lay, the tack came out, and the old 'un went to
bed again under the carpet. Up sprang the sad pa-
rent, spitting rags, and he says, says he : ' Well now,
how cur'ous — to think it should come so suddent !'
Still on he went, until the carpet was all up from
around the edges ; but when he tried to draw it away
SECOND SERIES. 331
on his shoulder, it was fast somewheres yet. R-r-rum-
bnm-boom! went the thunder; and says the infuriated
offspring, says he : ' Well, I never did see such a blun-
dering old dad as yon be. "We'll be ketched in the
rain as sure as grasshoppers ; and all because you didn't
take my advice about the hammer in the first place.'
The poor old 'un tugged, and pulled, and panted, and
says he: 'Well, now, it is cur'ous, I swun to massey.
There can't be no tacks way out in the middle of the
floor here, can they V To make sure, the old blind-
pate was going down on his knees to take a mouse- eye
view, when all of a sudden he gave a start, and he
says, says he : ' Why, 'pears to me, Sammy, you're
standin^ on the carpet yourself T And so he was — so
he was," says the Honest Abe, smiling into the fire,
" and that was the why the carpet had stuck fast in so
" Xow," says the Honest Abe, poking the Demo-
cratic chap in the ribs with his knuckles ; " if your or-
ganization wants me to move vigorously in this war,
tell them not to be standing on my carpet all the time.
Otherwise, I must still keep tacking about."
The Democratic cbap had been slowly rising from
his chair as this small moral tale drew toward its ex-
citing conclusion, and at the last word he fled the
apartment with quivering watch-seal.
Onr President, my boy, has a tale for every emer-
gency, as a rat-trap has an emergency for every tail.
It was on the morning of this same day, that 1 had a
pleasing conversation on the state of our foreign rela-
tions with a phlegmatic British chap connected with
the English Ministry, wdio is remaining here for the
ORPHEUS C. KERR PAPERS.
purpose of beholding anarchy in the North, which he
has been requested to immediately communicate to one
of Great Britain's morning journals. We were taking
Richmond together at Willard's, my boy, and had just
been speaking of the English Southern pirate " Ala-
bama" in terms of neutrality, when suddenly the phleg-
matic chap drew a roll of silk from one of his pockets^
fastened it to his cane, unfurled it before my eyes, and
says he :
" By the way, sir, 'ow do you like this ere h'original
h'idea of mine ? Do you see what it is ?"
" Yes, friend Bifstek," says I, Frenchily, " that is
indeed the Black Flag."
The chap turned very red in the face, my boy, and
says he: ''The Black Flag! what a 'orrible h'idea!
You must be thinking of the h' Alabama. What h'in-
duces you to suppose such a thing !"
" Why," says I, " there's the Skull and Crossbones
SECOND SERIES. 333
*' Sknll and Crossbones ! !" says he, " why, that's the
beautiful Hinglish crest — a crown and sceptres ; and
this is my new h'original design, ye know, for a new
Hinglish Kevenue Flag."
It was then, my boy, that I discovered my error, and
apologized for my obliquity of vision. It was strange,
indeed, that I should mistake for a skull the insio-nia
of royalty, even though a crown is not unfrequently
found identified with a numskull.
On the same Tuesday, my boy, there was a small
election in a town just this side of Accomac, and I went
down there early in the morning, to the office of the
excellent independent evening journal, that I might see
the returns as soon as they came in. The editor was
talking to two chaps — a Eepublican and a Democrat —
and, says he :
" The organ which my humble talents keep a-going
is strictly independent, and I have no choice of candi-
dates. I care only for my country, one and individu-
al," says the editor, touchingly, '' and can make no
arbitrary discrimination of mere parties ; but as you
both advertise your tickets in my moral journal, a
sense of duty may induce me to favor the side whose
advertisement weighs the most."
After this gentle insinuation, my boy, each chap
hastily commenced to write his advertisement. The
Eepublican inscribed his upon a very heavy piece of
brown wrapping-paper to make it weighty ; but the
Democrat selected a plain bit of foolscap, only putting
in a hundred-dollar Treasury :N'ote, to keep it from
When the editor came to look at the two, he cough-
334 ORPHEUS 0. KERR PAPERS.
ed slightly, and says he : "I have always been a Dem-
" But my advertisement certainly weighs the most,"
says the Republican chap, hotly.
The editor ate a chestnut, and says he ; "Not in an
intellectual sense, my friend."
" My paper is twice as heavy as his," says the chap ;
"and as to the Treasury E'ote, I had some scruples — "
"There!" says the editor, interruptingly, " you tell
the whole story, my friend. In the temple of a free
and reliable press, as well as elsewhere, some scruples
bear very little proportion in weight to one hundred-
The American press, my boy, might occasionally
adopt as an appropriate motto, the present Napoleon's
observation, that " L^ Empire c'est la pay."
Turning from intellectual matters, let me glance at
our country's hope and pride, the Mackerel Brigade,
each member of whom feels confident of ultimately
crushing out this hideous Rebellion as soon as national
strategy shall have revealed the present whereabouts
of the affrighted Confederacy. Last week, my boy, the
Brigade moved gorgeously from Accomac, headed by
the band, who played exciting strains upon his night-
key bngle ; and was only fired upon from the windows
of wayside houses by helpless women, against whom
the United States of America do not make war.
Woman, my boy, is the most helpless of God's crea-
tures ; and is so far from having power to help any
other being, that she even can't help being herself
The sun shone brightly down upon the spectacles of
SECOND SERIES. 335
the ancient Mackerels as they once more took the road
toward Paris ; and as the light was reflected from the
glistening glasses upon the carmine noses of which they
were astride, it seemed as though each warrior had a
rose in the middle of his comitenance to symbolize the
beautiful idea, that they had all arose for their distract-
ed country's preservation.
Captain Villiam Brown, mounted on his geometrical
steed, Euclid, was conversing affably with Captain Bob
Shorty, as they rode along together, when a Lieutenant
of the Anatomical Cavalry came dashing toward him,
and says he :
" Captain, there's something missing from the rear-
Yilliam assumed a thoughtful demeanor, and says
he : " Is it a miss fire ?"
" ]^o," says the Lieutenant, agitatedly : " but we
miss two — "
" Not baggage wagons ?" says Yilliam, giving such
a start that Euclid nearly fell upon his knees ; " don't
tell me that two wagons are missing."
" Why no," says the Lieutenant, with emotion, "it's
not two wagons that we miss, but two Brigadiers."
" Ah !" says Yilliam, fanning himself with his cap.
" How you alarmed me. I thought at first that it was
two wagons. Let the procession go on, and I'll send
for two more Brigs the next time I have a friend going
It w^ould please me, my boy, to detail the further
movements of the Mackerels, but the cause of strategy
demands that I should say no more on that topic just
336 ORPHEUS 0. KERR PAPERS.
The beloved General of the Mackerel Brigade was
at "Washington when he heard of the advance which
his enemies would pretend that he did not lead in per-
son, and says he to the messenger :
'' Are my gallant children ready for a fight V^
" Much so," says the messenger.
" Is the weather clear, my child?"
" Thunder !" says the General, valorously. " Then I
really believe that I must move my headquarters
across the Potomac !"
The Potomac, my boy — to speak with all due rever-
ence for sacred things — in the numerous backs and
forths it so constantly imposes upon the military,
would seem calculated to turn this war into another
Crusade, and make all our heroes literal soldiers of the
Oepheus C. Keee.
IN WHICH THE STORY TOLD BY THE GERMAN MEMBER OF THE COS-
MOPOLITAN CLUB IS DULY REPORTED.
"Washingtos, D. C ., November 12th, 1862.
Herr Tuyfeldock, my boy, the liigh-Dutcli cosmo-
politan, supernaturalized the last meeting of the club
with his old-fashioned story of
HERMANN, THE DEMENTED.
" At the base of a lofty mountain, and overshadowed
by its beetling cliffs, stood a rude hut, built of heavy
logs, and surmounted by a roof, the eaves of which de-
scended in broad scollops over the windows of the ten-
ement, and gave it the appearance of a small boy
wearing his father's hat. In the surrounding scenery
there was a wild grandeur and magnificence with
which no work of art would have been in keeping.
Immediately in the rear of the humble habitation, ab-
ruptly rose one of a range known as the Hartz Moun-
tains, stretching far away toward the west in waves of
bright and shadowy emerald, as the light fell upon
338 OKPHEUS C. KERR PAPERS.
them, and covered with gloomy forests, peopled with
unblest spirits by the legends of olden times. In front
and on both sides, spreading out its vast expanse of ver-
dant soil, until it appeared to meet with the horizon,
was a noble plain, beariug scattered clumps of trees,
through which a few isolated huts were discern able.
It was like Light and Shade meeting, with the hut un-
der the cliff to mark their boundaries.
" Evening had just begun to tint the fragrant air
with her sombre hues, when a figure was apparent,
moving over the plain in the direction of the lonely
domicil, and, as it approached nearer, the muscular
form and pleasing features of a young hunter were visi-
ble. He was exceedingly tall, yet symmetrical in
every limb, and quick in his movements as a chamois
on its native hills. His dress comprised a coat and
leggins of blue material, ornamented Avith silver but-
tons, a pair of heavy boots, and a narrow-brimmed
straw hat, from which a wolf's tail depended. He car-
ried a long rifle, and a bag for small game swung, with
a powder flask, or horn, at his side.
" Arriving in front of the hut, he paused a moment
to examine some footprints on the soil, and then tap-
ped gently at the door with the butt of his piece. In
an instant it was opened by a beautiful girl, with light
blue eyes, flaxen curls, and a complexion of pure red
and white, who, though dressed in the coarsest attire,
yet looked and shone a perfect goddess of the soli-
" ' Dearest Marcella,' exclaimed the hunter, seizing
her extended h^nd, and carrying it to his lips with all
the ardor of a lover.
SECOND SERIES. 339
" * I feared you were not coming to-night, Wilhelm,'
answered Marcella, with ablush of pleasure, as she led
him into the hut by the hand which she still re-
" The apartment thus entered occupied the whole
structure, save a portion apparently partitioned off with
wolf skins ; and a rude table, six chairs, and a goat-
skin covered couch, were the only articles of furniture
it contained, excepting a few trophies of the chase
hanging from the walls, and a woodman's axe placed
over the mantel. The floor was composed of logs, and
was very uneven, save directly opposite the fire-place,
where a large flat stone was firmly imbedded in the
earth ; and a small oil lamp, swinging in chains from
the arching roof above, gave forth a pale light
which mingled imperceptibly with that of departing
day in a mellow twilight.
" ' Marcella,' said Wilhelm, as they sat beside each
other on the couch, * I can scarcely realize that you are
the wild little fairy, with whom I used to explore the
dark woods of haunted Hartz. I can remember, too,
standing with you under the blighted pine, and relat-
ing old legends which I heard my father tell, while
you listened with breathless attention, and looked like
a startled chamois, when the wind rustled among the
" ' Those were happy days !' murmured Marcella.
*' ' They were, indeed !' continued Wilhelm, with en-
thusiasm — * yet why should infancy monopolize all the
richest pleasures of life ? As we grow older, our un-
derstanding becomes more clearly defined, and circum-
stances which rendered our childhood happy, should
340 OKPHEUS C. KERK PAPEKS.
become more truly appreciated as blessings, instead of
growing homelj and irksome to us.'
" * It is because the matured mind requires a wider
field for exercise,' said Marcella. ' When I used to
roam with you in the forest or on the plain, those lo-
calities constituted our little world, and I cared for no
other ; but as my father taught me the learning of
books, I awoke to a sense of uneasiness, and a con-
sciousness of restricted liberty. The beautiful world
of which I read became replete with attractions hith-
erto unknown to me, and I longed to quit these wild
scenes, and behold the palaces of princes.'
"' So it was with me,' responded her lover. *As
you may remember, my parents hoarded up their little
earnings, that I might enjoy the advantages of educa-
tion, and I went to Gottingen with the feeling of one
who was about to drink of pleasure at its fountain-head ;
but alas ! Marcella, the wide world is like a piece of
glass, which may sparkle in the distance with all the bril-
liancy of a diamond, and after leading us wildly on-
ward, becomes the more worthless, for our endeavors
to gain a closer view. I imagined that the learning of
schools would confer happiness ; it became mine, and I
found it a mockery. I mixed with the rich, gay and
gifted ; but my object still eluded pursuit. Marcella, I
became convinced that I left true happiness behind
me, when I departed from home ; and returned to its
shelter, resolved to leave it no more. I tasted of the
cup, and found it bitter.'
" ' My father talks in that manner,' answered Mar-
cella. ' He hates the world for the injury it has done
him, and even our few neighbors excite his scorn, by
SECOND SERIES. 341
their foolish fears of him. I am sure if they knew him
well, they could not lielp loving him as I do ; he is so
noble, so brave, so generous, that I cannot understand
wh}^ he is called " The Demented," unless it is because
his superior intelligence is regarded by the hinds as a
supernatural gift. Perhaps that is the reason,' she ad-
*^ ' You wrong the honest peasants,' said the hunter,
hastily ; ' who, though ignorant, possess the gifts of rea-
son and discrimination. Your father will not allow
them to know him better, and the extraordinary quan-
tity of game which he obtains would arouse supersti-
tions whispers from more enlightened minds.'
"'Poor deluded creatures!' exclaimed Marcella,
scornfully. ' Because my father's aim is truer than
theirs, ought he to be looked upon as one demented ? Be-
cause, by his skill in woodcraft, he surpasses their suc-
cess, should they shun him with looks of horror? Be-
cause he refuses to join in their low revels, should they
regard him as a ghost-seer ? Wilhelm, you have learn-
ing, and ought to frown down these foolish supersti-
tions, instead of partaking in them. Did you love
Marcella as you have often sworn you do, the man who
spoke evil of her parent, would from that moment be-
come your enemy.'
"'And so he should, dearest Marcella; but alas!
their suspicions are but too well founded, and though
you may be offended, 1 dare not deny that I myself
believe him to be in league with the Evil One."
"'Then leave me!' exclaimed Marcella, starting
from beside him. ' Why should you wish to wed the
child of such a man ? Might you not find a devil in
342 ORPHEUS C. KERR PAPERS.
me ? Why should 1 love a being whose lips have de-
clared my father a demon ? Go ! Wilhelm, I took
you for a man ; but you have the soul of a dwarf.'
" Her eyes flashed indignation as she spoke, and in
the eyes of her lover she appeared more beautiful than
*' ' I can forgive your reproaches, for I know them
to be actuated by noble sentiments,' he replied, draw-
ing her gently back to her seat. ' Honor to our pa-
rents is nature's first law, and God forbid that I should
condemn it ; but, dearest Marcella, there should be no
reserve between us, who have grown up side by side,
as it were, and I speak to you as I would to no one else —
not even my parents. That I love you, you surely can-
not doubt, and that love would be worth little to either
of us, did it enjoin concealment of our true opinions
from each other. I speak as an honest man, when I
tell you, that I once beheld your father in the Black
Forest, accompanied by a stranger, who was not of
" ' Gieat God !' ejaculated Marcella, starting up
" ' Forgive me, dearest ; but you forced me to say it
in my own defence. Calm yourself and we will talk
,of this fearful subject no longer.'
" ' Wilhelm, you are not trifling with me ?'
" ' As I hope to be saved, no.'
"The dauofhter of Hermann trembled for a moment,
as though the spirit of Fear had touched her, and the
dim rays of the swinging lamp, as they fell upon her
finely cut features, revealed the undisguised terror
SECOND SERIES. 34:3
there betrayed. Bat she quickly settled rigidly as a
marble effigy, and her voice was firm, as she said :
*• ' Wilhelm, I believe yon, and may God help my
unfortunate father. Tell me of what you saw, and dis-
" ' It were better to remain untold, Marcella.
" ' I must and will hear it,' she answered with cold
" 'Then it must be told,' said the young hunter,
with an involuntary shudder. ' On the second day after
my arrival from Gottingen University, I started out
from my father's cot, to course hares, taking with me
my dog and rifle, intending to remain absent all day.
For some hours I was quite successful, and succeed-
ed in killing a score of the fleet animals, but after
noon they grew scarce, and as the sun was sinking in
the west, I paused wearied and exhausted on the bor-
ders of the Black Forest, while my dog was panting
in the shade. As I stood thus, leaning upon my gun,
the sound of a bugle call fell upon my ears, and almost
immediately afterwards your father suddenly passed
me in the direction from whence it came, looking
straight forward with a stony, fascinated stare, so full
of mingled despair and earnestness, that I trembled
with superstitious fear, and even my dog crawled to
my feet, quivering in every limb. Onward he strode,
unconscious of a watcher, to a shaded spot on the bor-
der, just beyond my position, known as the Witch's
Circle. As he reached it, the bugle was again sound-
ed, when immediately a tall cloaked figure rode out
of the forest to meet him, and they saluted each other
in silence. I could not discern the stranger's features,
344 ORPHEUS C. KERR PAPERS.
but I noticed with breathless horror that the steps of
the horse which he rode, as well as those of another
which he led by the bridle, gave forth no more sound
than if they were planted in air '
" Wilhelm suddenly paused in his narrative, as a
beautiful "White Fawn suddenly sprang from beliind a
suspended wolf skin, and alighted directly in front of
him. Daylight no longer lent its rays to illumine the
apartment, and as the animal's eyes were visible
through the misty beams of the lamp, they seemed to
glare and blaze like coals of vivid fire.
" * Heaven preserve me !' ejaculated the young
hunter, crossing himself.
^' ' It is my pet, Leo ; do not fear him,' said Marcella
in low tones.
" * Your fjither mounted the unoccupied saddle,'
continued Wilhelm, going on with his adventure ;
* and together they disappeared between the pines ;
noiselessly as the falling of a feather. At short inter-
vals I heard the sound of the bugle growing fainter
and fainter, until it died away in the windings of the
mountains. I called my dog and hastened home,
without daring to look behind, lest I should behold
the mysterious riders following on my track.'
" A short silence succeeded, durmg which Mar-
cella gently wept, and caressed the fawn. A length
she spoke :
" * Dear Wilhelm, I now see the reason why yon
have ever avoided my father, and come here only
while he is away. Perhaps it is better that you should
continue to do so, for he is very irritable, and your
meeting might be attended with fearful results. Leave
SECOND SERIES. 34:5
me, Wilhelm ; I expect him every moment; it is al-
ready past his usual time of return.'
" ' I must speak with your father to nighty dear-
est,' said the hunter, encircling her waist with his
^' ' God forbid !' she exclaimed, looking up to him
with great alarm.
•' ' It must be so, Marcella ; I am about to ask a
gift of him, and his answer will either make me the
happiest of men, or leave me miserable for life. I will
ask his daughter of him as one who has a just claim,
and I cannot believe he will refuse me.'
" ' Wilhelm, you do not know my '
" At this moment there came a measured rapping
at the door, and Marcella arose to open it, trembling
with undefined dread. Hermann the Demented pressed
a kiss upon her brow as he passed the threshold, and
entered his cabin.
" He was an old man, for his hair was grey, and deep
wrinkles furroughed his brow ; but his form was fully
developed and upright as that of meridian manhood,
and there was a changing fire in his eye that indi-
cated all the energy ot youth. His dress was a mix-
ture of military and peasant garb, and he wore a tall,
black felt hat, encircled with a red ribbon. Game of
every kind hung in such profusion from his broad
shoulders, that it almost entirely concealed his person,
and he bore in his hand a rifle which few men could
handle. On arriving beneath the lamp, he deposited
his spoils upon the floor, and then, for the first time,
observed the presence of the young hunter.
" 'Hal is that you Wilhelm!' he exclaimed, casting
34:6 ORPHEUS C. KERR PAPERS.
aside his rifle, and extending his hand in a friendly
manner, ' I am especially glad to welcome a brother
craftsman to my cover, on a night when I have had
such uncommon luck. Look at that heap, and tell
me if }■ ou ever saw another such.'
'' ' You are famed as a fortunate hunter,' answered
the other, gazing upon the immense pile at his feet
" ' Yes, yes, Wilhelm, there are few men can bag
hares with Hermann, the Demented,' and the old man
lauglied a hollow laugh.
" ' Your skill must indeed be extraordinary, when
it enables you to secure many of these animals after
nightfall^ and without hounds^ returned Wilhelm,
looking iixedly at the hunter with a penetrating
" Immediately upon the entrance of her father
Marcella had drawn the table from the wall, and com-
menced to prepare an humble meal ; she was stand-
ing in a distant corner of the cabin, when ber lover
spoke thus :
" Hermann started back with a look of fierce anger.
"'What mean you, young man!' he asked in stern
" ' I had no intention of giving offence. Mynheer
" ' Your looks, at least, were impertinent,' muttered
the old hunter, turning abruptly from him, and com-
mencing to sort his game.
'' The simple meal was soon ready, and the three
persons partook of it without so much as a whisper.
When it was finished, and while the young girl was
SECOND SERIES. 347
replacing her few utensils, Hermann produced a large
Meerschaum pipe, and having filled it with tobacco,
lit it with a chip from the fire-place ; looking inquir-
ingly at his guest as he smoked.
" 'You were, doubtless, surprised to find me here?'
said the latter, with some hesitancy in his manner.
'"I am not often so highly honored,' responded
Hermann, quietly sending forth a wreath of smoke
from between his teeth.
'^'Do you understand my object, Mynheer Her-
" ' Certainly I do, Mynheer Wilhelm.'
" 'Indeed,' ejaculated the young hunter, with a look
"^ Of course,' said Hermann, ironically; 'you come
to my cot, Mynheer Wilhelm, hoping to behold some
diabolical orgie, or the working of some cabalistic
spell, by which I secure success in the chase. You
expect to see me in communion with the mountain
spirits, and allowing a long-tailed demon to breathe
upon my rifle. Look around you, my honored guest;
is not my daughter some horrid witch in disguise ? Is
not this gentle fawn, a bloodthirsty spectre metamor-
phosed ? Do you not see at least a dozen goblins
climbing the barrel of my rifle ? Ha, ha, ha ! you will
add another to the thousand and one legends about
Hermann the Demented. And tell me, young man,
what is to prevent my oflTering you as a sacrifice to
my counsellor, the devil ? People would say it served
you right, for entering this unholy place. You had
better depart before my familiar makes his appearance
to sup with me, from the skulls of children. I assure
348 OKPHEUS C. KERli PAPERS.
you, mynheer, that yonder stone bottle contains human
blood. Fly, before the spell begins to work.'
'' Although the old man frequently laughed while
speaking, there was a hollowness, and unreal zest in
his mirth, that made the young hunter shudder.
'* * You have made a great mistake. Mynheer Her-
mann,' he replied calmly. ' I came here with no such
despicable intentions as those you attribute to me.
To be plain and honest with you, I am here to ask a
gift of you."
*' ' What is it, boy V
" * Your daughter, mynheer.
" Dropping the pipe, and springing to his feet, Her-
mann confronted his guest, glaring upon him with vin-
u '"VVretch ! dare you insult me?' he howled, gnash-
ing his teeth.
" * Mynheer Hermann, be calm, I beseech you ; you
have obliged me to make the request thus abruptly,
and I am willing to abide the consequences. I love
Marcella, and she loves me. I would make her my
*' For a moment, the father held his hand to his
brow and fixed a glance upon the young hunter, as
though to read his inmost soul ; then turning quickly
to his child, who sat near him, trembling with fear, he
asked excitedly :
" ' Is this true, Marcella V
" ' Yes, dear father,' she replied, arising from her
seat, and laying her head fondly upon his breast.
" ' He looked down upon her beautiful face, suffused
with tears, in silence ; slowly the flash of anger faded
SECOND SERIES. 349
from his countenance, leaving the gleam of idolatrous
affection shining there. The feelings of a parent
overcame all others, and a bright drop glistened on
'"'Mj darling, my only treasure,' he murmured,
pressing her closely to him. ' Your happiness is my
only earthly object.'
"'AYilhelm,' he continued, placing his disengaged
hand upon the youth's shoulder, ' 1 wronged you in
my suspicions, and ask your forgiveness. Your face,
as v;ell as that of my darling, convince me that I
wronged you. Yet I cannot grant you my child, until
you have first heard somewhat of her history, and my
own. Not but that she is a jewel, the proudest king
might wear upon his bosom with honor,' he continued,
with spirit ; ' but no man shall ever accuse me of prac-
tising a lie.'
" He resumed his seat, still holding Marcella close-
ly to his bosom, and went on :
"'To no other living being have I ever told my
strange story, and there is that in your countenance,
which tells me you are no traitor. Listen attentively
to what I say: I was born on the estate of a nobleman
in Transylvania, to whom my father was steward, and
spent the happiest days of my existence roving about
those vast domains, a free and joyous child. At the
age of thirteen, I w^as placed in a school, where I ad-
vanced rapidly in learning, until I was the acknowl-
edged phenomenon of the village, and the pride of my
fond father. Years of unalloyed peace rolled over my
head, during which I wooed the beautiful daughter of
a landed gentleman — won and married her by stealth.
350 ORPHEUS C. KEKR PAPERS.
Her father's rage knew no bounds in the first moments
of discovery, and he threatened to separate us ; hut my
"wife's entreaties soon banished his anger, and we were
soon received in full favor both by him and my own
parents. Oh ! what unsubstantial, foolish, joyous days
were those ! How did I idolize the girl, whom I had
won, as a heathen worships his household god.
•* * At length a fearful epidemic swept the country ;
my father was one of the first victims, and my heart-
broken mother soon followed him, bequeathing us her
dying benediction. It was my first trial, and in the
bitterness of my grief, I left the familiar scenes of my
boyhood. To this spot 1 came with my beautiful wife
and built this cabin, resolving to spend the remainder
of my days in these soothing solitudes. But my fate
was yet to be accomplished. My father's employer
found me out, and sent a message, earnestly request-
ing me to become his steward. Yielding to the im-
portunities of my wife — for I could refuse her nothing
— 1 accepted the proposal, and journeyed back to
Transylvania with a heavy heart ; for a cloud seemed
hanging over me, a presentiment of sorrow to come.
The nobleman received me more as an equal than as a
servant, and uttered many encomiums on my father's
worth, which could not but prove grateful to a heart
like mine. I loved and honored him at once ; and re-
solved to testify my gratitude by a faithful discharge
of my duties. He was still a young man, but I felt no
jealousy, when the idol of my heart praised him, blind
wretch that I was ! At length, the cloud, so long
forming, burst over me in a flood of misery. Almost
immediately after the birth of our daughter, the father
SECOND SERIES. 351
of my Marcel la came to me and imparted a secret that
almost deprived me of m}^ senses. Poor old man!
he thonght I knew all before, and my ravings filled
him with alarm. Frantically I swore revenge, and
with murder in my heart, was about to seek the des-'
troyer of my peace ; but the old man restrained me,
and after a violent debate, I resolved to say nothing to
my wife about the matter, and kept a strict watch
upon her. Alas ! her father's suspicions proved too
just. I surprised her in company with her paramour,
and after loading them with the bitterest curses, took
my daughter and returned to the hut under the cliff.
My whole life was blighted, every hope was crushed;
but the very madness of my despair gave me strength,
and I swore vengeance on my enemy. On the even-
ing of that fearful day, after lulling my unfortunate
child to sleep, I knelt down on the flat stone before
you, and in the fervor of delirium, called upon The
Spirits of Hartz Ifoimtains for aid. Scarcely had
the sacreligious petition left my lips, when there came
a gentle knocking at the door, accompanied by a shrill
bugle note, signifying bewilderment in the forest.
Like one in a dream, I answered the mysterious sum-
mons, and immediately a White Fawn bounded into
the hut, followed by a tall stranger, wrapped in a
cloak of fine material.
" ' " You called me and I have come,' he said, in
tones that made me shudder, and peer into his
eyes, in which there was a fearful fascination which I
could not resist.
u c a TVho are you ?" I managed to articulate.
" < " Varno of heT Black Forest," he answered, in a
362 OEPHEUS C. KEKR PAPEES.
voice of rolling thunder. I know not why it was, but
at his reply my fear vanished, and my wrongs arose
before me in their darkest coloring.
'' * '' Can you aid me?" I asked, returning his pierc-
ing glance. Never shall I forget the fearful distinct-
ness with which he said :
u i a Hermann Yandervelt, I know what you would
require of me, and you shall be satisfied, hut there is a
price attached to my services ; three requests shall be
granted, and then tjou must he miiie^ soul and hody.
Will you swear to this?"
" ' Like a maniac, I fell upon my knees before the
stranger, shouting, in the height of passion : "Grant
me but revenge upon the betrayer of ni}^ honor, and I
will be yours, eternally yours, soul and body yours ;
I swear by the God who — "
" * " Silence !" thundered the stranger, his eyes
glowing like coals of withering, devouring fire.
" ' ' Hermann, you must swear by the Spirits
of Hartz Mountains^ Wrought up to frenzy, I
obeyed him. He dictated a fearful oath, and when
I had repeated it, he said, in tones that froze my
u ( a Hermann Yandervelt, take your rifle and seek
your enemy ; he shall fall by your hand. I will leave
you this animal (pointing to the fawn,) and when you
would see me, let it return to the forest. Kemember,
I have granted one request ; two more shall be grant-
ed, and then you loill he niijicJ^
" ' His horrid laugh is still ringing in my ears. In
silence, I opened the door, and beheld, dimly through
the darkness, a tall steed with blazing eyes, standing
SECOND SERIES. 353
motionless upon the plain. As the stranger passed
me, a momentary chill, like that of the grave, fell
npon me ; he mounted, and I saw him no longer.
Grasping my rifle, I fled through the darkness like
a fiend of blood, the White Fawn following my foot-
steps like a hound. No rest, no meat, did I take until
I saw my enemy lying before me, bleeding to death,
while the Fawn lapped his blood.
" ' " I am Hermann !" I shouted in his ears, and then
flew back wildly, as I came. My child was nearly
dead from neglect when I returned from the doubly-
cursed spot ; but I tended her faithfully, and she soon
went forth with me to the forest ; and the White
Fawn never left her side.
" * I was a successful hunter at first ; but suddenly
my fortune changed, and I could get no more food.
Then was the spell of madness on me once more, and
/ set the Wuite Faivn free. Again there came a
knocking at the door ; again the Fawn sprang in, fol-
lowed by its master. My second request was granted —
there remains hut one more ! From that night my
familiar has met me on the borders of the Black
Forest nightly, and the darkest depths are filled with
game for me. Such is my story, Wilhelm, and here,
on my bosom, reposes the child of my afl*ection. Speak
boldly, as becomes a man ; would you wed the daugh-
ter oi Hermann^ the Demented f^"^
"While the old man related his fearful story, vari-
ous emotions were apparent on the handsome face of
Wilhelm, but at its conclusion unwavering resolution
was stamped upon his features.
" * Hermann !' he said, extending his right hand to
354 ORPHEUS C. KERR PAPERS.
the old hunter, 'I sincerely pity you as the victim of
circumstances, but the blight does not touch Marcella ;
I love her more dearly than ever, and if you will give
her to me, she shall find in me a husband who would
shed his last drop of blood for her.'
" ' Wilhelm, you are worthy of my child, take her and
may heaven grant you the blessings it has denied to
me. Bring a holy man here to-morrow, and make her
riglitly yours. I would see her happy before I — ' lie
suddenly paused, placed his weeping daughter in her
lover's arms, and turned aside to hide the starting
*'Soon Wilhelm was wending his wayorer the plain,
and the innocent MarcelUi retired to her narrow apart-
ment of wolf skins ; but the old man sat with his face be-
neath the lamp, and the White Fawn crouched beside
him. Long did he meditate through the lonely watches
of the night, and the sweat of agony stood upon his
temples. Slowly did he stagger to where the wolf
skins hung, and raising them in his trembling hands,
dwelt mournfully upon the picture before him. There,
on her couch, in all the artless grace of slumber, lay
the only being on earth whom he loved. One faultless
arm was hidden beneath the pillow, the other half
shadowed lier face, and bore a glossy veil of flaxen
curls. Her ruby lips were apart, as thougli she had
fallen asleep while yet the evening pmyer was on her
tongue. Diml}^ streamed the light of the swinging
lamp upon the human temple of purity, and Hermann,
the Demented, wept like an artless child.
It must be done — it is the last^ he murmured,
SECOND SERIES. 355
dropping the rude partition, and quickly opening the
" Swift as the meteor falling through the shades of
night, flew the White Fawn out into the darkness,
with a plaintive cry. With bowed head the old man
clasped his hands and listened. He hears a shot, a
bugle note echoes tln-ough the dew-ladened air, and the
ghostly rider is again at his door.
" ' You sent for me, and I am here,' said Yarno, en-
tering the cabin, and casting the White Fawn cold
and dead, upon the floor.
" 'I ask your aid !' said Hermann firmly.
" ' Kemember, it is the third and last time^ mut-
tered the stranger.
" ' I will fulfil my oath. Grant me my wish.'
" * Beware P thundered the other.
"' Speak not so loudly, or you will wake my child,'
said the hunter, gazing fearfully toward where Mar-
" ' Fear not, good Hermann, the sleep of the inno-
cent cannot be disturbed by a Spirit of Evil. Declare
your wish and it shall be granted.'
" ' Then hear me, fiend, devil, or whatever thou art !
I would have my child happy ; I would have her hus-
.band ever warm in his love for her as he is this mo-
ment; I would have the curse of her parents forever
averted from her head. Grant me this and I am
" ' It shall be so,' answered Yarno, with something
like pity in liis tones. 'Thou must meet me at sunset
on the evening of to- morrow, beside the WitoKs Circle
356 ORPHEUS C. KERR PAPERS.
— there shall our compact be fulfilled. This is the
third and last. JRememher.
" The dark spirit passed from the hut under the cliff
but his shadow lingered behind ; and the old hunter
knelt beneath the swinging lamp, with the dead fawn
at his feet, desolate and lone.
" Tlie day smiled brightly on Marcella, the genial
sunbeams dispelling night's horrors. She looked sadly
when her father told her how the White Fawn had
been wounded by some wandering hunter, and had
sought the hut to die there ; but the presence of Wilhelm
made her cheerful as the morn, and Hermann felt re-
warded for his sacrifice.
" A missionary monk stood within the old cabin,
and said the words that joined two lives in one. When
the holy rite was finished, the wedded pair knelt at
the feet of The Demented, and called down Heaven's
richest blessings on his head ; but alas ! he could not
say * Amen,' for he remembered his compact, and the
words of Yarno still rang in his ears. He watched his
child with more than earthly care till the sun began
to sink once more behind the Black Forest, then seiz-
ing his rifle, he kissed her blushing cheek, and sallied
forth toward the mountains.
" * Dear father, may you soon give up such unholy
pastimes,' murmured Marcella, looking fondly after
him as his grey hairs floated in the wind.
" ' God grant that he may,' murmured her husband,
ferventl}^ pressing her to his heart.
" But the old hunter returned no more. The wolf start-
ed as he lay in his lair, when a man rushed by his covert
in the Black Forest. A bugle, wildly sounded, awoke
SECOND SERIES. 357
the bird in his leafy bower. Two meu met at tho
Witch's Circle, while a day was dying, and the shades
of the wood closed over them forever."
Orpheus C. Kerb.
SHOWING HOW THE NATIONAL INSANITARY COMMITTEE MADE A
STRANGE blunder; HOW THE BELOVED GENERAL OF THE MACK-
EREL BRIGADE WAS REMOVED AND EXALTED ; AND ENDING WITH
AN INFALLIBLE RECIPE,
Washington, D. C, Xovember 15tli,1802.
As I calmly observe tlie present situation of ourmil-
itafy affairs, my boy, and consider how persistently the
Blue Ridge continues to get between our great strate-
gic army and the dilapidated Southern Confederacy, I
am impressed with the idea that the salvation of our
distracted country demands the removal of either the
Blue Ridge or the beloved General of the Mackerel
I admit, my boy, that the Mackerel Brigade has
spent time enough in one locality since the last battle
to remove the incompetent and imbecile Blue Ridge^
and that the immense number of spades consigned to
that veteran corps might be construed into the belief
that they were really engaged in that great stragetic
task. Furthermore, that the Mackerels have only suc-
ceeded in marching fifteen miles in six weeks, legiti-
mates the supposition that they are going up very steep
hills ; but it must be borne in mind, my boy, that it is
SECOND SERIES. 359
the Honest Abe's best policy to conciliate all political
parties for the sake of Northern unity of action,
and it cannot be doubted that the removal of the Blue
Eidge at this crisis would occasion the bitterest heart-
burnings and jealousies in the manly bosom of ourna-
tion's Democratic organization. It would be con-
strued into proof that the Honest Abe had yielded to
the fiendish clamor of the crazy Abolitionists, and had
rendered a restoration of the adored Union-as-it-Was
of our forefiithers impossible, by -destroying that Blue
Ridge which was an essential part of tlje Union. The
manly Organization, my boy, would prefer an armis-
tice with the unseemly Confederacy to a removal of
the Blue Ridge — a removal, my boy, authorized neither
by the Constitution, the pursuit of happiness, nor the
rights of man. The Blue Ridge is at the head of our
army, and our army is at the foot of the Blue Ridge,
The mistaken Confederacy is on the other side, my boy.
and the Organization very justly reasons, that the
fiendish Abolitionists virtually confess themselves to
be, in heart, on the same side with the Confederacy ;
for if their desired removal of the Blue Ridge were
carried out, the distinction of the two opposite sides
would be practically lost, and the United States of
America aud the Southern Confederacy would be all
on one side, and there might be an unconstitutional
Hence, my boy, the Honest Abe has concluded to
leave the Blue Ridge where it is, and remove the idol-
ized General of the Mackerel Brigade.
But before I proceed to describe the inexpressible
anguish produced by the adoption of even this griev-
360 OKPHETJS C. KERR PAPERS.
ous alternative, permit me to record the useful proceed-
ings of the IN'ational Insanitary Committee, in their
philanthropical investigation of the lunacy now pre-
vailing to an alarming extent in the Army of Acco-
For some weeks past, my boy, insanity has been
frightfully upon the increase in the ranks of the uncon-
querable Mackerel Brigade. Many Mackerels have
even gone raving at times, persisting in the vague and
incoherent exclamation that they '''CoiddnH See It^
There was some hope that this terrible mental aberra-
tion might be stayed, if the superannuated corps were
supplied with spectacles ; but the relief thus given was
only temporary ; and finally, when one of the poor man-
iac chaps went so far as to yell, that, even by the aid of
his spectacles, he couldn't see what was the use of but-
ting against the Blue Kidge all the time, it was deemed
proper to call in the National Insanitary Committee.
Captain Samyule Sa-mith, whose duty it was to draw
the Brigade up in two lines — the sane chaps on one
side of the fence, and the insane on the other — hastened
back to Accomac to finish a game of " Old Sledge," on
which four drinks were distinctly pending, and left
the aged Committee to perform its task at leisure.
In anticipation of this sad ceremony, my boy, I had
sent my architectural steed, the gothic Pegasus, down to
Accomac, and thither I went on Tuesday morning, to
amble totteringly from thence to the scene of Insani-
The Committee had just commenced work upon its
line of chaps, and was examining the patients one by
SECOND SERIES. 361
The first invalid, Lively Mike, was born in the Sixth
"Ward, and weighed ninety-two pounds. He svas a
poor, sloucliing chap, my boy, resembling poverty's
Euin, two-thirds covered by an ivy vine of rags. His
angular countenance was rich with unwashings, save a
clean irregular circle just around his ugly mouth.
I asked how it happened that this one part of his
face was clean, when all the rest was dirty ; and they
told me, my boy, that it was the place where his poor
old mother had kissed him at parting.
Lively Mike's first symptom of his dreadful malady
was a feeling of overwhelming weariness, as though he
had been for a long time in one spot doing nothing.
The feeling deepened into sullen, dangerous madness,
until it was finally unsafe to let him go at large, as he
had several times attempted to shoot scouting Confed-
The next hopeless patient was Big-nose Jake. Born
at the commencement of his career in the Sixth Ward,
and weighing ninety-four pounds without his knap-
sack. Big-nose had always enjoyed good health, with
the exception of starvation ; but was in the habit of
muttering to himself that Strategy was a great hum-
bug, and he'd rather die at home in his bunk in the
engine-house than in a swamp, without a single fire in
six-months. His only way of keeping warm was by
occasionally huddling up to a Confederate picket, and
receiving his fire.
Ko. 3 was Baby Jim, a resident of the Sixth Ward
for many years, and weighing ninety-one pounds. His
first attack of his malady came in the shape of an in-
coherent and irrepressible desire to get up a Directory
362 OKPHErs c. kerr papers.
of Army lN"ames, so that the families of Mackerels in
the Army of Accomac might know where their rela-
tives were, and how old they had got to be. Some-
times he would be suddenly seized with the absurd
notion tliat the General of the Mackerel Brigade was
killing more men by strategy than would be slain in
Another hapless maniac was Cross-eyed Tom. His
family is well known in the Sixth Ward; weight,
ninety-seven pounds. Always enjoyed excellent health,
until one day, w'hen it suddenly struck him — uncalled-
for, as it were — that he hadn't seen the Colonel of his
regiment for six months. The demon of insanity
tempted him to believe that his Colonel had all along
been drinking bad gin and threatening to resign, in
Washington, instead of staying with his men and get-
ting acquainted with them. He knew that he must
be entirely mistaken about this, but couldn't shake off
the horrible delusion.
A fifth lunatic was the Worth street Chicken. Had
voted several times a day in the Sixth Ward, and
weighed ninety-nine pounds. The Chicken could not
say that he was really a sick man ; but had moments
when he could not resist the malignant temptation to
imagine, that the celebrated Southern Confederacy was
just as even with us now as it was a year ago, with
several majestic raids for small trumps. At times he
was troubled with bad dreams about all the Treasury
Notes becoming worthless if the General of the Macke-
rel Brigade went into winter quarters.
And so the Insanitary Committee went down the
whole line, my boy, closely questioning the poor chaps
SECOND SERIES. 363
who had lost their reason, and eliciting continued
proofs of the national ravages of Insanity.
"Truly," says the chief Insanitary chap, cleaning his
nails with his jack-knife ; " truly these unhappy beings
are hopelessly deranged, and must be sent to the Asy-
lum. Their ravings are beyond all precedent."
Just as he finished speaking, my boy, and whilst he
was picking his teeth to assist meditation. Captain Sam-
yule Sa-mith came riding hastily in from his successful
game of " Old Sledge," bringing the stakes with him,
and says he : '
" Well, old Medicusses, have you examined the be-
ings which is unhappily bereft of sense ?"
" Yea," says the Insanitary chap, with a grievous
groan, " we've examined all those poor creatures, in
that whole line, and find them all hopelessly and in-
Samyule gave such a start that he split one of his
boots, and says he :
" Which line ?"
■' Why, that line there," says the chap, pointing.
" By all that's Federal !" says Samyule, slapping his
left leg ; " I'll be blessed if you old goslings hav'n't
been examining the WKOXG LINE ! Them veterans
there are the sane ones !"
Insanity, my boy, like Charity, so seldom begins at
home, that we sometimes mistake the best kind of san-
ity for it when we meet the latter, as a stranger,
abroad. The man we call a maniac is frequently noth-
ing more than a sane man seen through a maniac's
But the whole body of Mackerels, sane and insane
364: OKPHEUS C. KERR PAPERS.
alike, unite in a feeling of strong anguish blended with
enthusiasm, at the removal of tlie beloved General of
the Mackerel Brigade. He has been so much a Father
to them all, that they never expected to get a step far-
ther while he was with them.
There's a piece of domestic philosophy for you, my
When the General heard of his removal, my boy, he
said that it was like divorcing a husband from a wife,
who had always supported him, and immediately let
fly the following
Head-quarters of the Army of Accomac,
Foot of the Blue Ridge,
My Children :
An order from the Honest Abe divorces us, and
gives the command of all these attached beings to Ma-
jor-General Wobert Wobinson. (Heartrending and
In parting with you, I cannot express how much I
love your dear bosoms. As an army, you have grown
from youth to old age under my care. In you I have
never found doubt nor coldness, nor anything else,
The victories you have won under my command will
live in the nation's works of fiction. The strategy we
have achieved, the graves of many unripe Mackerels,
the broken forms of those disabled by the Emancipa-
tion Proclamation — the strongest associations that can
SECOND SERIES. 365
exist among men — still make it advisable that you
should vote for me as President of the United States
in 1S65. Thus we shall ever be comrades in support-
ing the Constitution, and making the Constitution sup-
The General of the Mackerel Brigade.
It was while this affecting document was being read
to the Army, my boy, that a procession of political
chaps with banners and a small cannon, landed from a
boat on Awlkwyet Eiver, and came filing affably into
camp. Only pausing to insult two correspondents of
the Tribune^ and to fire the cannon so close to a farm-
house that it broke all the windows, these pleasant
chaps at once organized a meeting and gave orders
that all fighting should be postponed till after the
The Hon. Mr. X. Stream proceeded to say that he
considered Mr. Lincoln a strictly honest, upright, able,
and noble-hearted man (cheers) ; but it could not be
denied that his Administration was a wretched fail-
ure — a blending of brutal imbecility with hellish des-
potism. (Much enthusiasm). While it continued so,
everything in the stock-market would go up — up — up !
until the bubble burst. The General of the Mackerel
Brigade had been removed (universal sobbing) but it
was only that he might shine the brighter before a
Democratic Convention in 1865.
The Hon. Prince Yan Brumagen next spoke. Un-
donhfofllv. he would be called a traitor for what he
266 ORPHEUS C. KEKR PAPERS.
was about to saj, but he was accustomed to that sort
of talk from every one who knew him. He wished to
see this war vigorously pushed forward ; but he could
never consent to see violence offered to men who only
warred against us because they were mistaken. Our
Southern friends had imagined that the Abolitionists
wanted to prevent their enjoyment of the pursuit of
happiness which was guaranteed to them by the Con-
stitution. They were mistaken, and seceded. The
Union as it was had passed away from us, but was un-
doubtedly somewhere on the Globe ; and as the Globe
was constantly revolving, we had only to stand still,
and it would come round again to iis in due time.
The Hon. Fernando Fuel next undressed his thoughts
to the meeting. As proprietor of the City of Kew
York, which he had frequently bought, he protested
against the removal of the General of the Mackerel
Brigade at this inclement season of the year. The
idolized General was beloved even by the Eebels, and
his own devoted troops had cheered even louder when
parting with him, if possible, than when he had first
come among them.
Here the speaker was interrupted by a chap who
suddenly touched off the cannon and simultaneously
unfurled a new banner. Borrowing a piece of smoked
glass, I looked through it at the dazzling standard, and
read upon its eloquent folds :
SF.COND SERIES. 367
REGULAR HIGH-MORAL NOMINATIONS !
FOR THE SENATE IMMEDIATELY;
FOR PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES IN
THE (late) GENERAL OF THE MACKEREL
Observe, mj boy, this simple rule, to make a hero
of a fool :
Just keep him where he is, until his lack of wisdom,
want of Skill, attract unto his banner those who, from
perverseness, will have foes. Then freely make his
dullness known ; and when you'd cast him from his
throne, you'll find become his followers true, all men
who seek a feud with you. To serve the always-mal-
content, and give their spleen a chance for vent, a
knave, a dunce, a stump! would do as well, my boy,
as I, or you.
When cats and politicians quarrel, " use any cat's-
paw", is the moral.
Orpheus C. Kerr.
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Game Fish of the North.
A sporting work for Northern States and Ganada. Illus., 81.50.
By Stephen G. Massett ("Jeemes Pipes"), illustrated, 81.25
The Flying Dutchman.
A humorous Poem by John G. Saxe, with illustrations, 50 cts.
Notes on Shakspeare.
By Jas. H. Hackett, the x'\merican Gomedian (portrait), $1.50.
The Spirit of Hebrew Poetry.
By Isaac Taylor, author " History of Enthusiasm," etc., 82.00.
A Life of Hugh ITIiller.
Author of " Testimony of the Rocks," &c., new edition, 81.50.
A "Woman's Thoughts about Women.
By Miss Dinah Mulock, author of ** John Halifax," etc., 8 1 .00.
Curiosities of Natural History.
An entertaining vol., by F. T. Buckland ; two series, each $1.25.
The Partisan liCader.
Beverley Tucker's notorious Southern Disunion novel, 81.25.
First of a series of Honore de Balzac's best French novels, 81.00.
Petty Annoyances of Ittarried Life.
The second of the series of Balzac's best French novels^ $ 1 .©o.
The third of the series of the best of Balzac's novels, 81.00.
The fourth of the series of Balzac's best French novels, 81.00
The National School for the Soldier.
Elementary work for the soldier ; by Gapt. Van Ness, 50 cts.
LIST OF BOOKS PUBLISHED
Tom Tiddler's Ground.
Charles Dickens's new Christmas Story, paper cover, 25 cts.
An essay by Richard Grant White. 8vo. embellished, $1.00.
Literary Essays reprinted from the British Quarterlies, 81.25.
Thomas Bailey Aldricli.
First complete collection of Poems, blue and gold binding, $1.00.
Ont of His Head.
A strange and eccentric romance by T. B. Aldrich, $1.00.
Tlie Course of True I^ove
Never did run smooth. A Poem by Thomas B. Aldrich, 50 cts.
Poems of a Year.
By Thomas B. Aldrich, author of" Babie Bell," &c., 75 cts.
The King's Bell.
A Mediaeval Legend in verse, by R, H. Stoddard, 75 cts.
Aclevernovel of American Life, by Mrs. R. H. Stoddard, $1.00.
An historical novel by F. D. Guerrazzi, from the Italian, $1.^0.
An historical novel by the author of "Beatrice Cenci," $1.25.
A Popular Treatise on Deafness.
For individuals and families, by E. B. Lighthill, M.D., $1.00.
Oriental Harems and Scenery.
A gossipy v^-ork, translated from the French of Belgiojoso, $1.25.
Her lectures and autobiography, with a steel portrait, $1.25.
John Doe and Richard Roe.
A novel of New York city Hfe, by Edward S. Gould, $1.00.
The original letters of this great humorist, illustrated, $1.50.
A comic history of America, by " Doesticks," illns., $1.50.
The Elephant Club.
A humorous description of club-life, by "Doesticks," $1.50.
A novel by Mrs. Caroline H. Glover, Charleston, S. C, $1.00.
The Book of Chess Literature.
A complete Encyclopaedia of this subject, by D. W. Fiske,$i.50.
THE LIBRARY OF THE